Home page


Academic publications & papers

Instructional materials


Prose translations

Poetry & music




Profession-related activities



Three international conferences in Russia celebrating the 175th anniversary
of Tolstoy's birth
28 August -- 5 September 2003

.Poempage 2

Photos and a poem
from Turgenev's estate
(with English translation)

(page updated 21 September 2003)

This poem was written on Sunday, 31 August 2003, while sitting beneath  Ivan Turgenev's favourite oak tree at Spasskoe-Lutovinovo, the family estate of the famous Russian writer

Click here to return to the conferences report (English)

Click here to go to Poempage 1 (Yasnaya Polyana)

Click here for two poems written at Yasnaya Polyana's Great Pond

Click here to see poems published in the Doukhobor journal Iskra

Note: The Russian words on these pages appear in photo-images and not electronic text.


Photos of Spasskoe-Lutovinovo
(Turgenev's family's estate, Orlov oblast)

[Photos © J. Woodsworth, taken Sunday 31 August 2003]

Poem: "V Spasskom-Lutovinove" [At Spasskoe-Lutovinovo]

Russian original
(English translation follows)

English translation
At Spasskoe-Lutovinovo

John Woodsworth

[Original in Russian, written while seated at Russian writer Ivan Turgenev's favourite oak tree on his family estate, August 2003]

To walk through the quiet allées of Turgenev's
  museum-estate is most pleasant,
Where each moment one feels one's self wedded
  to nature with a joyful solemnity present.
The Spasskoe-Lutovinovo* park is all criss-crossed
  by paths with green arcs at their junctures,
And I now see the trees and the gardens and flowers
  which I knew before only from pictures.

At one time Ivan Sergeevich Turgenev
  himself walked these paths so enlightening.
'Neath his favourite tall trees he would spend many days
  sitting: reading, composing and writing.
Today I am sitting and writing these lines
  'neath the shade of an oak -- at the edges --
Which Turgenev once planted himself on this spot
  near a pond all surrounded by hedges.

In the past more than once the Turgenev park served
  as a venue for popular dances,
With gay ribbons and nuts and their prianiks so tasty
  the peasants sang songs and romances.
Turgenev invited his actress friend Savina**
  to join in the festive occasions.
And during these good years the peasants and landowners
  kept up their peaceful relations.

While sitting and watching I can't help but think
  of what underlies all these fine shadows,
Of the thoughts represented by such pleasant views
  of the ponds and the trees and the meadows,
Of that which the heart can but truly perceive
  in a vision of spiritual creation,
Of that which bestows not from soil but from heaven
  our true everlasting salvation.

Spasskoe-Lutovinovo (Orlov Oblast, Russia)
31 August 2003

Translated from the Russian by John Woodsworth
14 September 2003

*The word Spasskoe is related to the Russian words for "Saviour" and "salvation".  Lutovinovo is taken from the family name of Turgenev's mother.

**Marija Gavrilovna Savina, who often performed leading roles in the staging of Turgenev's dramatic works.


Click here to go to Poempage 1 (Yasnaya Polyana)

Click here to return to conference reports (English)

Special note:  The Cyrillic fonts used to display the Russian text on these pages were designed by JW in the late 1980s, using the font editor "FonTastic" on an old 512K Macintosh computer.




"Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you... 
Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid."

-- John 14:27


E-mail : <jw[at ]kanadacha.ca>
Please copy this address manually into your address bar, using the usual symbol in place of [at]
back to top
 Home page
 Academic publications
Conferences Report (English)
Conferences Report (Russian)
Conferences Photopage 1
Conferences Photopage 2
Conferences Poempage 1
Other Yasnaya Polyana poems
Poems from Iskra
Poetry & music pages