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Read U Lukomorya in English or Russian, then explore our illustration on the leftabove. Can you find all the details mentioned in the poem?

By The Bay У Лукоморья

There, by the bay, an oak, all verdant, У лукоморья дуб зелёный;

A golden chain around it wound; Златая цепь на дубе том:

And day and night, a cat who’s learned И днем и ночью кот учёный

Walks on that chain, round and round. Все ходит по цепи кругом;


Rightward he goes — a song he murmurs, Идет направо — песнь заводит,

Leftward — a fairy tale he weaves. Налево — сказку говорит.

There’s magic there: the wood sprite wanders, Там чудеса: там леший бродит,

A mermaid sits among the leaves. Русалка на ветвях сидит;


There hidden, winding paths unmapped, Там на неведомых дорожках

The tracks of unseen beasts in scores. Следы невиданных зверей;

A hut on chicken legs stands stacked, Избушка там на курьих ножках

Without windows, without doors. Стоит без окон, без дверей;


There full of sights are wood and lawn, Там лес и дол видений полны;

There waves that break before the dawn Там о заре прихлынут волны

On desolate and sandy coast. На брег песчаный и пустой,

And thirty splendid knights appear И тридцать витязей прекрасных

In course emerge from waters clear, Чредой из вод выходят ясных,

And Old Man Sea behind the host. И с ними дядька их морской;


There, on his way, the prince unbowed Там королевич мимоходом

A fearsome tsar intends to seize; Пленяет грозного царя;

There in the clouds, before the crowd, Там в облаках перед народом

Above the forests and the seas, Через леса, через моря

A hero's dragged by warlock fierce. Колдун несёт богатыря;


A princess grieving in a cell, В темнице там царевна тужит,

Her wolf, devoted, serves her well. А бурый волк ей верно служит;

There Baba Yaga in her mortar Там ступа с Бабою Ягой

Which on it's own can walk and wander. Идёт, бредёт сама собой,


There Tsar Koschei wilts over gold; Там царь Кащей над златом чахнет;

There's Russian soul... the scent is bold! Там русский дух... там Русью пахнет!


And I was there, and I drank mead; И там я был, и мёд я пил;

And there the oak I saw, all verdant; У моря видел дуб зелёный;

I sat beside the cat who's learned Под ним сидел, и кот учёный

His tales I listened to with heed. Свои мне сказки говорил.


One I remember, and this one Под ним сидел, и кот учёный

I will now tell to everyone. Свои мне сказки говорил.

What is this?

U Lukomorya - By the Bay - is the prologue to the epic fairy tale Ruslan and Lyudmila by the "founder of modern Russian literature," Russian poet and sex symbol, Alexander Pushkin. It tells the tale of Lyudmila, daughter of Prince Vladimir of Kiev, captured by the nasty dwarf-wizard Chernomor and the adventures the brave knight Ruslan goes through to rescue her. Pushkin based the story on Russian folktales he heard as a child so many classic characters have cameos in the poem.

Translation by Ellen Baryshev & Yana Barysheva Illustration by Tatyana Kunets

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