nasha maty na bazari bula
my mother was at the bazaar
Kharkiv oblast, ukraine
My mother was at the Bazaar is a lively village song originally recorded in Kysel’i village, Pervomays’k district, Kharkiv oblast - an area of Ukraine that has been significantly impacted by the ongoing war in Ukraine. The version we sing here comes from Ukrainian Village Voices, a performing and teaching project based in New York City. Translation and ethnomusicology support for this song was provided by Olesia Lewyckyj Jarymowycz.
The phrase “Oy-dub-dubyna” sung throughout the song literally means “oh, oak, little oak” but acts as a filler here - probably because it is fun to say! Ukrainian folk music and culture is famous for it's plant / nature-based folkloric themes and imagery, even as glossolina as we find in this song.
Nasha maty na bazare bula |2
Oy, dub-dubyna, na bazare bula! |2
Vona sobi kaval’iera pryvela |2
Oy, dub-dubyna, kaval’iera pryvela! |2
Shche y dl’ia yoho vebyralas’ia, |2
Oy, dub-dubyna, vebyralas’ia vona! |2
U krynytsi y umyvalas’ia, |2
Oy, dub-dubyna, umyvalas’ia vona! |2
Poza skl’iankoyu vydyvl’ialas’ia, |2
Oy, dub-dubyna, vydyvl’ialas’ia vona! |2
Prokl’iatoye zerkalo, zovs’im nevyd’iushche, |2
Oy, dub-dubyna, nevyd’iushche vono! |2
A ya toye zerkalo ta y na оskolky rozobiu, |2
Oy, dub-dubyna, ta y na оskolky rozobiu! |2
A do svoho kaval’iora nepoprata ya poіdu, |2
Oy dub-dubyna, nepoprata ya poіdu! |4
Our mother was at the bazaar,
oh at the bazaar!
She brought back a bachelor
oh, brought back a bachelor!
She was even cleaning up for him
oh, she cleaned up!
She was washing at the well
oh, she was washing!
She looked at herself in the glass
oh, she was looking!
Damned mirror, it’s useless!
oh, it’s useless!
Well, I’ll shatter that mirror into shards
oh, into shards I’ll shatter it!
And I’ll go to my bachelor all unkempt
oh, I’ll go unkempt!