The Poetry of Pavel Chichikov

Pavel's new collection of poems, A House Rejoicing, is now 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.

Pavel's book From Here to Babylon is 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."  

Guest 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.


 

 

 

Fall foliage in West Virginia; photo by ForestWander

 

Hear Pavel read  "These Eternal."

 

THESE ETERNAL

 

This very morning I have seen

The dying leaves proclaiming life,

Coral, russet, gold and green

 

All at once before the frosts

Hills below a swollen sky

Interweaving life and loss

 

And I may ask how this can be

That I was born to walk and watch

The transformation of the trees

 

An answer I have understood

Articulated by the wind:

I am the record of these woods

 

That we are born to see and keep

This memory that never dies

Forever though my flesh may sleep

 

We are immortal, soul and mind

Our memories forever more

Imperishable past all time

 

So that what color seems as past

Imprinted is in light and love,

In God’s eternity will last

 

That for this purpose we were made

To show in heaven what we see

That these eternal never fade

 

  

 

  

   

 

 

Jenny’s Market

Courtesy Annie Rie Unplugged

 

 

STAY WARM

 

Stay warm this winter, we’ll be back in spring

Said the woman at the farmers’ market

Who sold us vegetables, home-baked cakes and dumplings

 

Beyond her at the bottom of the hill

Lock Mountain showed a needlepoint of leaves

Crimson, ochre, gilding of the maple

 

But April is six months away and who

Can know what will be happening till then

When that which falls presumably comes new

 

She says it is for sitting by the fire

Reading books and knitting in a chair,

The pastimes of the weaver and the dyer

 

But who can know which eyes will open then

To see the light of April rising higher

Such promises on which the world depends

 

She wished it in a lowered voice and cast

Her glance aside as if we all could stand

Here once again and mind the winter past

 

 

 

  

ALIEN

 

In Moscow the militia at the door:

What is this inostranetz doing here?

I had no proper papers to be there

 

Here as well I have no proper papers

My eyes are not averted and I raise them

To see the deep horizon and beyond

 

I am the alien, undocumented one

And so I empathize with every alien—

All we foreigners know one another

 

How many of us are there, who can know?

We are the secret synagogue of awe

The quorum that assembles in the soul

 

We know that our existence need not be

Nor might there be a world except for this:

Like some of us, an alien was He

 

  

 

         



Jeffrey Smart (1921–2013), “Waiting for the Train”

Courtesy National Gallery of Australia, Canberra

 

 

ALL YOU CAN AFFORD

 

When going on your journey

You buy your ticket first,

One side is a blessing

The other side a curse

 

A line goes from the window

Stretching long and curves

Around a distant corner

Where some are never served

 

The ticket that they sell you

Is crumpled, smudged and scored

With many a notation—

It has been used before

                                                                                                       

Your name is scribbled on it

And circled with a line

Of mucky midnight cursive,

Perhaps a cryptic sign

 

Then the train is ready

To take you all aboard,

And where the train may leave you

Is all you can afford

 

        

 

  



Julian A. Scott (1846–1901), “The Mounted Sentry”

State House Collection, Montpelier, VermonT

Courtesy 19th Century American Paintings

 

 

ONLY FROM THE UNKNOWN

 

May you trust God that you are exactly where you are meant to be.

—St. Therese of Lisieux

 

Always lonely, posted on the frontier,

The country never was well guarded

And the decades lapsed, the garrison grew thinner

 

Why was I placed here beyond my qualities

Poor in love and poor in any prospect

Not well endowed with any great abilities

 

Now we are no more of even what we were,

Through shriveled strength and more infirmity

We will grow weaker, older, always fewer

 

Here at history’s discouraged end

We are so unprepared, so crippled with misgivings

And soon there will be little to defend

 

The region on whose bulwarks we appeared

Degenerates to ruin as we look

No one left to heal it as the sages feared

 

All good morals shrivel, power grows

Bends and twists the spirit into evil shapes

The inner clever beast within disclosed

 

So that to hold the wall here meaningless

We should put down our feeble weapons and disperse

For nothing keeps us but our stubbornness

 

Where does this willful doggedness come from?

From somewhere in the wilderness beyond the wall

Since only from the unknown can our rescue come

 

            

  

 

INFINITY HAS ENDED

 

I speak to you from here

So many years ago

This unimagined shore—

My name you do not know

 

You my distant friend

Infinity has known,

Time will have an end

And you are not alone

 

For courage we were made,

To travel on the sea,

Do not be afraid

Of deep eternity

 

I speak to you from where

The Risen has ascended

His glory to declare

Infinity has ended

  

    

 

 

  Donkey

 

 

A MOST MYSTERIOUS TRIP

 

The uptown bus was driven by a donkey

We could hear it heehaw on the intercom

Call the stops and tell us where we’d come from

Where we were going, individually

 

It was the beast that Christ rode into town,

Pattered tiny hooves upon the palm leaves—

Seated were the publicans and thieves

And also upright citizens, Smith, Jones and Brown

 

Mr. Smith, your stop is next, Inferno

And after that for Jones—it’s Purgatory—

It knew each destination, flame or glory,

And where each passenger was meant to go

 

How such creatures drive that have no grip

Is mystery enough, but how it knew

Our names and destinations—what would you

Make of it? A most mysterious trip

  

  

 

 

 

The Poetry of Pavel Chichikov / Last modified October 19, 2014/
Poems copyright 1994-2014 Pavel Chichikov/  
URL: http://pavelspoetry.com

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