The Poetry of Pavel Chichikov

NEW! Ave Maria University has released a description of its Pavel Chichikov Poetry Collection of printed, digital, and recorded materials.

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, or write to nlevine@erols.com. Read the review of Lion Sun on Scribble on the Net, an electronic journal of New Zealand and international poetry.  

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 www.homagetogoya.com. And a selection of his photos can be seen at Catholic Images by Pavel Chichikov.

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

Enjoy artist Timothy Jones's blog page, which features his painting "Fallen Oak."  

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.


 

 

 

Memorial Day

Courtesy Father Julian’s Blog

 

 

MEMORIAL DAY

 

The hillside filled with flags that wave like grass

Gravesides swept and garnished with remembrance,

Monday is the day of reminiscence,

Wind has clasped the graves in its embrace

 

Who preserves the resonances, keeps

Precisely in their minds the wars that fade,

When they lived the flags above the streets

Quickened with their colors their parades

 

Visitors bring symbols to this hill—

The graves of those so lovingly they tend

With flags are void, no spirit may be killed,

The wars are buried here and not the men

     

 

   

 

 

Black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia) flowers; photo by Archenzo

Courtesy Wikimedia Commons

 

 

WITHIN THE FORTRESS

 

A clear fine day in middle spring,

On rising ridges five miles off

Single trees reveal themselves

 

But as the locust sconces blossom

White and lilac pendant clusters

And as the clover blooms its wool

 

There are no bees to forage here

A desolation, holocaust -

Is there no one to see and fear?

 

They are the sentinels of God

Withdrawing from their outer posts

As we within the fortress feast

 

    

   

  

THIS CROP INSTEAD

 

We plant a garden, then it rains

What have we done to draw such clouds?

The sun comes out but seeds remain,

What germs are these that cry aloud?

 

Rain comes down as red as rust,

What crop will manifest its fruit?

First the harvest of the just

Ripped and shrieking from the root

 

We had been exiled so we spread

The only seeds that we could take

To cultivate this crop instead:

Narcissus and the red mandrake

  

 

  

  

WINDING ROOMS, INNER ROOMS

 

Delightful when the north wind blows

In middle May, the iris blooms,

Spruce leans over, spreads its fringe,

The woodland shows its winding rooms

 

Tonight a summer heat withdraws,

Tonight there will be near a frost,

Today the sun will reach the height

Of gliding hawks in dazzle lost

 

Tonight will fete a crescent moon

Above the meadows overgrown

By sweet new grass the rabbits graze,

A bear with one green eye alone

 

Slides like oil from inner rooms

Along the aisles of hemlock trees,

A blackness in the meadow looms,

It is the one green star I see

 

 

 

 


 

Krista Machovina (b. 1972), “Wild Boar”

Courtesy Krista Machovina

 

 

TO DESTROY A PEOPLE

To destroy a people, you must first sever their roots. —Solzhenitsyn

 

And so the great hog roots and snuffs

The swine of underworlds unseen,

Ploughs the fallow and the ripe,

Slits the stalk where children gleaned

 

Long of muzzle, yellow tusked

It slavers over root and grain,

Sparse of hair along the rump

But coarse and tangled is the mane

 

Where it passes nothing grows,

The feet have scattered poisoned seeds

It scuffed from Hell when it came up,

Where clouds give never rain but bleed

 

It is the beast of lawlessness

Of chaos and sterility,

As it champs it drops its brood

Insatiable in vanity

 

 

  

 

 

 

Albrecht Dürer (1471–1528), “The Seven Sorrows of the Virgin; The Flight into Egypt”

Gemäldegalerie Alte Meister, Dresden

Courtesy Web Gallery of Art

 

 

 

WHO’S NOT EVER TEMPTED?

 

Who’s not ever tempted by the false desire

To be regarded, courted, feted, well-admired?

Truly it is better to be silent, small

The donkey of Nativity who kept his stall

To breathe upon the Christ child but was ill-accounted,

On which the Christ the blessed one was safely mounted

Entering Jerusalem in lowly state -

Palm leaves were the Passover the donkey ate

 

Now be still, be silent and make not a sound

For silence more than anything is most profound -

The signal to the prophet that the Lord preferred

Was not the quake or burning that Elijah heard,

Low and deep as oceans and the deep abyss

And who would not be humble at the sound of this?

Power deep beyond our hearing and our sight

And to be still and small beneath it good and right

 

     

  

  

AN ASCENSION

 

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

 

  

 

 

 

James Tissot (1836–1902), “Christ Appears on the Shore of Lake Tiberias”

Brooklyn Museum

Courtesy Wikimedia Commons

 

 

OH SO STRANGE

 

He likes to fish, said Peter’s wife

He won’t catch much but who can tell

And who can stop him, off he goes

With that crew of ne’er do wells

 

His heart is broken and he’s scared

But fishing calms him well enough,

The sea is quiet until dawn,

By afternoon it can be rough

 

There he goes to ease his heart

The water peaceful, there it lies

By quarter moon before the dawn,

A current takes the boat coastwise

 

Fist and haul the empty net

To mend the meshes where it frayed,

Shoreward slowly they ride in

Though counting fish they might have stayed

 

Nothing ever really changes

Dreams that happened floating free,

It won’t come back but oh so strange

The figure on the beach they see

   

    


 

MY TESTAMENT

 

Here is what I leave, I give to you

Water from the desert that I drew,

This desiccated ground delivered up

Enough to bring a brimful to a cup

 

Not much, I know, but better than a thirst

In this denying desert, red and cursed,

I wish it could be more, but this I found

Secreted in the channels underground

 

Take the cup of water, drink, it will

By scraping of the soil of God refill,

The rains may come or not, no one can tell,

There may be more beneath you for a well

 

 

 

The Poetry of Pavel Chichikov / Last modified May 24, 2015/
Poems copyright 1994-2015 Pavel Chichikov/  
URL: http://pavelspoetry.com

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