Adam’s Ode to a “Hometown” Hero

Poet, author, dissident, critic, journalist and man-about-town Ivan Franko. on the occasion of the 350th anniversary of the founding of L’viv National University, which now bears his name. Photo: Bill Pupchek

For his online English class, Adam (17) had to write a poem commemorating someone from his hometown. Since L’viv is his current hometown, he chose someone whose name appears everywhere, even on my place of employment (where he was a student) and about whom we are slowly learning. I am very impressed with his poem. Here it is:

To Ivan Franko (1856-1916)

I come to your town.
I’m a stranger. I don’t know these parts.
I see your name from street to street,
That’s when we finally meet,
Your tall stone image shines in the square.
You’re one of a kind, you’re a man who’d care
For the peasant cause — you went to jails.
I want to know your stories, your poems, your tales.
You’re the foundation
For every Ukrainian who loves this nation,
From Odessa to Kyiv to Lviv —
Your words have made Ukrainians believe.



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3 responses to “Adam’s Ode to a “Hometown” Hero

  1. John Beam

    That is great!
    I can tell Bill did not help Adam with it since it did not start…
    There once was a man from L’viv….

  2. Shirley Kuiper

    Moving! That little guy you brought up to my office 12 years ago is someone to be proud of.

    I look for your postings daily–and envy you.

    • Thank you, Shirley! Yes, we are proud of him! He’s still pretty cute, but hairier. He and I are working hard to catch up on his online classes. The two-month wait for the internet hurt his ability to participate fully, but we’re up and running now, and he is enjoying analyzing poetry — as well as writing some — and trying his hand at art. Scissors and glue are on the horizon and may be used to create a masterpiece appearing on a blog near you. I am so glad you are following along. This is a wonderfully rewarding experience on so many levels!

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