The Poetry of Pavel Chichikov


NEW! See Pavel's photos at Pavel's Camera. Check out the hawk on Domestic and Wild.

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, in print and on Kindle, and at Barnes & Noble. The cover art is "The Little Festive House," by Lisa Lorenz. 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

Sylvia Dorham's moving The Book of Names is available at 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 ( and must be credited to Pavel Chichikov. No alterations in the text may be made. All copyright restrictions apply.

Please note: Pavel has no connection with CivFanatics and never has had.






Mother and Daughter

Photo by Pavel Chichikov





Will she recall she was borne in her mother’s arms?

Not for me no matter how much I try

Only the dry and dusty heat of July


How thirsty I was when I saw an iron pump

And knew somehow that water came from a well

The knowing of how I knew invisible


And yet in us all our memories’ full print

Never deleted will stay with us until

The great summation of life and the offering up of the will


Everything, everything stored in the memory

But who will be reading the record of every mind?

Around her fingers her mother’s hair is twined







Photo by Pavel Chichikov





I saw those three together

A human trinity

A child, an elder, one between

Through each a family


All so made that each of them

Conjoining in a chain

Obliges them to be entailed

Or nothing would remain


I know these whom I picture

Who live by lineage

From one there is another

And so to heritage


That will keep them steady

They will know who they are

Although the Earth may burn and fall

Like any falling star





Nikolay Nikolayevich Ge (1831–94), “What Is Truth?”

Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow

Courtesy Wikimedia Commons





Blood and flesh, mud and spit

Wine and water, wood and thorn

This the Spirit that was born


On sacred land He came to be

With gender, name and native place

Weight and height and human face


Was seen and saw those native hills

The Golan east, the Great Sea west

In clothes of linen He was dressed


His foot set down a human print

His hands were calloused and His skin

Was cracked and scoured by the wind


His hair was of a common color

He ate and drank with all of us

His eyes were sometimes stung with dust


It must be then that dust and flesh

Are also sacred in their way

Because He was composed of clay


And yet unlike because He rose

From death and was our Savior-Guide—

What Spirit may in humans hide?






Red Balloon

Photo by Pavel Chichikov





See my heart, a red balloon

Through the window I will show,

See it forest, night and noon

I bring it so that you may know


The heart of me, it is for you

My forest green, my forest green

Heart to be with you not yet

The heart of me that none have seen


I show it now and I am three

None have seen the heart of me,

Night by night and day by day

The wind will take my heart away






Daniel Reeve, Map of Narnia, for the film “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe”

Courtesy Daniel Reeve





I saw a license plate that said

I’d rather be in Narnia

And that is where my own thoughts led


For there the contrast of the good

With evil was as simple, plain

As sunlight in a darkened wood


Where happiness and unison

Had likelihood to so prevail   

That courage could be counted on


And morbid shadows pass away

Though dread as dragons they can fly

Since sunlight will a shadow slay


As powerful as witches be

Their license runs not half so far

As gladness to eternity


Coveting we can but start

The engines of our dear desire

The road seems long as we depart


The object is invisible

Though we may think the story ends

In Narnia, the parable







Empty Wheel

Photo by Pavel Chichikov





The Iron Wheel which takes the spirit up

From earth and then to life beyond

Deserted, and the seats are moved somewhere


The autumn rains will come to thicken rust

The motor long has seized, immobile is

But no one yet dismantles what remains


Amazed, the wandering tribes will gaze aloft

At what their fathers and grandfathers made

For some strange purpose left behind and lost


But they will say: A sacrifice was raised

And shown to all the demons who looked down

To contemplate the meal that was prepared


The chants and hymns are silent that were heard

The wind blows through the girders as the word



(May 25 is the Feast of the Ascension of the Lord.)





Rembrandt van Rijn (1606–69), “The Ascension”

Alte Pinakothek, Munich,

Courtesy Wikimedia Commons





It’s knotty to describe it but here goes

When you give a good without reward

Some have said the pleasure of the gift

Is in itself a carnal hedonism

And therefore call self-giving an illusion


But they mistake externals for the essence

For if I give without a recompense

Not even gratitude or recognition

The act itself becomes objective truth

That neither I nor one anyone can see


It is an object rising, an ascension

The way the Christ ascended from the Earth

An object which achieves its full dimension

No matter how much pleasure or how little

My deed affords, or anyone can know


And this is how I see it now, a sphere

Of perfect love, as if a golden world

A symbol of an infinite circumference

Orbiting the blessed One, the Lord

Who from the center couples every soul


But I have read how rabbis recommend

This method of distributing a sum

On the giver’s coattail sew a pocket

And let a sum of alms be dropped inside

So that the giver may not see who takes it



The Poetry of Pavel Chichikov / Last modified May 21, 2017/
Poems copyright 1994-2017, Pavel Chichikov/  
Proudly hosted by
Opinions expressed here are solely those of the author.