Cover Image for While We Were Waiting for War

While We Were Waiting for War

Oleksandr Kocharyan, trans. by Anna Lordan
Issue Three

Oleksandr Kocharyan’s quiet poem of anticipation draws attention to the civilian experience of waiting for the big war. In the words of the translator Anna Lordan, the poem focuses on ‘relationships and intimacy—intimacy with objects, with people, intimacy with people expressed through objects’.


while we were waiting for war
I bought alcohol
a supply of fuel tablets
and a small aluminium kettle.

when we left,
I gathered them up—I didn’t know
whether or not we would need them.
we didn’t need them.

I call my mother.
I listen to her talk about a damaged and burning pipeline
I try to convince her to take
the kettle and the alcohol and the fuel.

she says, what are you talking about
I don’t need them
that pipeline is miles away from here.


[Read in Ukrainian here].


Image: Marjan Blan. Unsplash.

Cover Image for Ukraine, the Land of the Future

Ukraine, the Land of the Future

Issue Three

Amidst Russia’s relentless terrorist warfare, the memory and legacy of its victims drive Ukraine into the future. This issue is dedicated to Victoria Amelina, killed in a Russian missile attack.

Sasha Dovzhyk
Cover Image for Three poems

Three poems

Issue Three

Having turned to poetry after Russia’s full-scale invasion, Victoria Amelina infused her verses with records of loss, pain, and perseverance she was exposed to as a war crimes investigator. Translated by Larissa Babij for this issue of the London Ukrainian Review, these three poems open a window onto the Ukrainian experiences of the all-out war.

Victoria Amelina, trans. by Larissa Babij