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Volodymyr Sosiura

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Volodymyr Sosiura

  • Kyiv

    I adore the boisterous streets,

    and the ruin of the Golden Gate,

    the gardens, and the downpour of songs, of footsteps,

    and the wistful greetings of factory whistles.


    I adore the reflected lights

    in the waters of the Dnipro River,

    the perennial stirrings of happy crowds,

    and the distant calls of steamers.




    (Volodymyr Sosiura. Collected Works: in 4 vol., vol. 2. Kyiv: Dnipro, 1986, p. 346.)

    * We have deliberately quoted only a fragment of the poem, considering that Volodymyr Sosiura repents before the Soviet regime his past role of a supporter of Symon Petliura in the following lines.

  • Spring

    It’s spring, oh spring. So gardens seem all drunk,

    the trees are swaying in the wind,

    and, in the Sophia Square,

    Bohdan’s bronze is coming to life.


    Awaking from eternal slumber,

    opening the forbidding copper of an eye,

    right into the blue depth of the sky,

    his horse seems to fly.


    Faster and faster it’s racing,

    shedding foam from its mouth –

    The spring is bubbling all around

    in warm and fragrant colours.


    The children voices’ merry chime

    is swashing their way to school,

    and as a rainbow around them

    my dear Kyiv rejoices.


    And in the blossoming downpours of songs

    all hearts tremble in their depths –

    As through the boisterous streets,

    the overwhelming spring is marching.



    (Volodymyr Sosiura. Selected works: in 2 vol., vol. I. Kyiv: Naukova dumka, 2000, pp. 354–355.)

    Both this poem and the renowned Love Ukraine! are part of the book For the Gardens to Rustle (1947). Most of the poems from this book were composed at the end of the WWII or in the early years after. This largely explains the elation of the poems: after long years of bloodshed there finally was hope for a new and happy life, envisioned as a garden in bloom.


    …Bohdan’s bronze is coming to life. – refers to the statue of Bohdan Khmelnitsky in the Sophia Square.

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