The Poetry of Pavel Chichikov

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NEW! Check out Pavel's new photos at Pavel's Camera. We update the page almost every day. See Near Us for photos of activities on lake ice. 

Pavel's latest collection of poems, So Tell Us, Christ, is now available from Amazon in both paperback and Kindle formats. The cover art is "El Salvador"  by El Greco, from the Museo del Greco in Toledo.

Ave Maria University's Special Collections include printed, digital, and recorded materials by Pavel Chichikov. The university is currently developing a new Website.

Pavel's A House Rejoicing is available at Amazon.com, in print and on Kindle, and at Barnes & Noble. The cover art is "The Little Festive House," by Lisa Lorenz. Hear what Pavel says about the book. From Here to Babylon is also available in print and on Kindle.

 Lion Sun: Poems by Pavel Chichikov, published by Grey Owl Press, is available at Amazon. Also by Pavel are Mysteries and Stations in the Manner of Ignatius  and Animal Kingdom, from Kaufmann Publishing.

Pavel's poems inspired by Goya's etchings are at homagetogoya.com.

Sylvia Dorham's moving The Book of Names is available at Amazon.com. See Pavel's review on the book page!

Poet Charles Van Gorkom's blog may be found here.

All poems on this page are by Pavel Chichikov. They may be freely distributed, if not for profit, upon the permission of Pavel Chichikov (fishhook@atlanticbb.net) and must be credited to Pavel Chichikov. No alterations in the text may be made. All copyright restrictions apply.


 

 


 

Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis)

Photo by Pavel Chichikov


 

THE CREST OF US ERECT

 

Crest erect like some Homeric warrior’s

The cock defends advantage at the feeder

He’s called a cardinal in the vernacular

 

What’s yours is mine what’s mine is mine he means

Turning on the finches and the sparrows

With eyes like flashing stones he lunges, leans

 

Yours is mine the same in persons and in nations

Especially in those who see some other realms

As just so many rivals’ feeding stations

 

We often live that way, instinctual

With overlays of politics and guile

But still within and underneath the cardinal

 

Although we humans boast of intellect   

Like bristled boar our rockets will emerge

And that will be the crest of us erect

    

  



 

Peter Frederick Rothermel (1812–95), “Thou Art the Man”

Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts

Courtesy PAFA

 

 

IF I CAN HEAR

 

On Emmaus Road the Risen told

The story of King David and Uriah,

Of how the king deceived, betrayed and killed

The faithful man, the loyal Hittite soldier

 

By foul guile the trustful one was slain,

The murderous King David’s sign of favor

Sent for base concealment of a lust

From poor Uriah, David’s loyal retainer

 

Yet despite these crimes I gave him mercy

To die in his own bed before the end

Of Zion’s throne and all that he had won—

Filthy crimes My Light will not defend

 

Richly gifts My children cannot bear:   

Power over others, haughtiness,

But I will grant respite if I can hear

Humility, the lowness to confess

  

  

 



“The Queen of Fortune,” illustration from John Lydgate, The Book of Troy

University of Manchester (UK) Library

Courtesy Wikimedia Commons

 

 

 

THEY CALLED HER FORTUNA

 

In the classical world they called her Fortuna

But now she is never a female persona,

They call her Statistics, no he nor a she

A eunuch, a neuter Statistics must be

 

At least in those days she rewarded virtus

Character, fortitude, being of use,

A queen with a warmth in her womanly blood

Wayward and fickle in her womanhood

 

A throw of the dice, a throw of the bones

Has more of the life and less monotone,

The flight of the birds from the left to the right

Had the promptness of vision, directness of sight

 

You will come to the end of your life and your death

Heart come to rest in a spasm of breath,

But the soul like a sparrow flies up and goes out

So then you will know what your life was about

  

 

  

FARMERS

 

The farmer said I have a field of flourishing tall corn

Ten thousand acres in Nebraska, that’s where I was born,

Another farmer said I have a field of durum wheat

The buyers come from Italy, it’s fit for the elite,

I have fifty thousand hogs, said a farmer from Missouri

I’ve won blue ribbons at the fair, my neighbors were the jury

 

I have got a larger farm, the Lord God Jesus said

Six billion souls alive this day, and many more thought dead,

I raised them from the vacuum, good light was what I used

To fertilize their spirits, of them I then will choose

Those who yearn to follow Me, though some may still refuse

 

Light I made from chaos, it was the incubator,

Love is what I prize the most, I will not take a hater,

I set them in My farmyard and watch them interact

To see if love is in the stock, or love is what they lack,

I will not harbor livestock, but only of the lover

Will I accept in Paradise, and those will live forever

     

    

 

 

Pascal Dagnan-Bouveret (1852–1929), “The Last Supper”

Courtesy Wikimedia Commons

 

 

UNTIL THE WORLD’S DOWNFALL

 

Only twelve before us and maybe at the end

Twelve will be how many holy martyrs He will send,

Beginning with a dozen twelve are what we need,

It only wanted Christ in faith five thousand men to feed

 

The Holy Spirit guiding, His strength will multiply

Though Faith decay to only twelve and all the rest deny,

Christ will find the faithful and they will know His sign

The transubstantiation of the wafer and the wine

 

If a priest should split the Flesh until it is a crumb

Draw the droplets of the Blood so many more have some,

There will be Blood and Body enough to feed us all

Enduring in fidelity until the world’s downfall

    

 

   

 

MAYBE AFTER

 

The grass still growing green beneath the snow

Uncovered by a chill revealing rain

Disclosing that the autumn grass will grow

 

The plum tree given ground a year ago

Projects a tendril branch above its head

Disclosing that an autumn tree will grow

 

My hair is white, I find much more to know

About myself and other people too

Disclosing that an aging soul can grow

 

Can we complete our growing time or no?

Not in this life I think but maybe after

The time for snow but not the time for laughter

                      

 

 

  

 

Allegheny Madonna

Photo by Pavel Chichikov

 

 

AS MARY VIRGIN DID

 

As Mary Virgin did so does this mother,

A shawl of wool supports her precious child,

She is the next Madonna and another

Confidently gentle, deep and mild

 

I know the street she lives on near the town

Not Nazareth but also on a height,

Her Joseph might be working in construction

Her Jesus is her infant and delight

 

Many crucifixions to an age

God save Him from the cross that is to be,

The jealousy of emptiness is savage,

May his mother’s love be like the sea

 

Returning and returning, ever youthful

Crowned with lace of ivory and with blue,   

Ancient in replenishment and primal

Moving, ever moving, ever new

 

    

The Poetry of Pavel Chichikov / Last modified February 7, 2016/
Poems copyright 1994-2016 Pavel Chichikov/  
URL: http://pavelspoetry.com

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