The Poetry of Pavel Chichikov


DID YOU KNOW?---We update this site frequently---usually, every Saturday. Check back to see Pavel's new poems and classics from the archives. 

You can view Pavel's photos at Pavel's Camera. Recently added: Winterfest 2017, with scenes from our town's Christmas parade and street festival.

Pavel's latest collection of poems, So Tell Us, Christ, is 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.

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. Also by Pavel are From Here to Babylon; 
Lion Sun: Poems by Pavel Chichikov, published by Grey Owl Press; and 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.




Flammarion Engraving

From Nicholas Camille Flammarion (1842–1925), L'atmosphère : météorologie populaire

Courtesy Wikimedia Commons





There was a dome above the world

Isaiah’s veil, Isaiah’s net,

On one side was reality

On the other was not-yet


On one side death was overcome

Christ had risen from the tomb,

Sunlight poured as from a cup

On the other cold and gloom


Marjorie they buried you

Where once the green of summer grew,

On the hillside under snow

White has come to cover you


The white of your baptismal gown

That covered coffin, grave and all,

What will never grow was sown

The snow will melt that was snowfall


But only come and I will show

What lies beyond this steep hillside,

A step, mere step, but step and through

To see the stars that were denied





Wood Thrush (Hylocichla mustelina)

Courtesy All About Birds




Blue-gray clouds like sculptured smoke

Folded through with snow and cream

Was this the Word the Father spoke?


Bird song in a frigid spring

Thrush returning from the south

Are these the gifts the Magi bring?


At moments all becomes as One

A light, a symbol and a song

A bird the Spirit, Spring the Son


If I could keep what I have seen

For more than seconds I would know

What all the separate moments mean


Did He know forever more

When Jesus went apart to pray

What you and I and He are for?






Albrecht Dürer (1471–1528), “Saint Jerome in His Study”

Kupfertich-Kabinett, Dresden

Courtesy Wikimedia Commons





The lion who sat by the chair of Saint Jerome

Shrank itself smaller and sits near me on my desk

But still a true miniature and not a burlesque


In deserts and wastelands sensory visions exist

There is nothing that can be seen which is untrue

Either it is in the mind or in visual view


It is the cautioning beast that growls and rumbles—

It says there are spirits which wander here and there

In the mind or in the shimmering waves of the air


The demons are gnashing deceivers who whisper this:

There is no bread to eat but the bread of stones

And there are no living creatures but dry bones


They offer a kingdom of trash for a token worship—

But the lion drives them away with his yellow eyes

And even the greatest of them is the Lord of the Flies






A Vigil

Photo by Pavel Chichikov




I would build my house beside

The sepulchers of useless pride

Six feet long and three feet wide


There the world would lay to rest

The worst of me and not the best

Sunrise up and sunset west


There would be a bridge across

The roof, the walls, the wooden cross

On which the writing reads: No Loss


A curving bridge so traffic could

Pass above the cross of wood

In that silent neighborhood


In that house would be a bed

For sleep as for the other dead

Unless there comes what Jesus said


That we will sleep and then we rise

To be with Him to our surprise

Inside the House where no one dies







José de Ribera (1591–1652), “Ecce Homo”

Courtesy Wikiart





Who beat, whose fists knocked out His eyes

Cursed and mocked One they despised,

What anguish to be hated so

What shock to suffer every blow


On brow and temple to emboss

A crown of blood, then load the Cross

To bear by lagging steps until

They reached the summit of the hill


For them He gave His blood and breath

His own young life to conquer death,

For those who beat him almost dead

To give for them His flesh as bread


To not condemn and curse but save

To raise these wretches from the grave—

Who but Christ would rescue such

That only willing maggots touch?






Bartolomé Esteban Murillo (1617–82), “The Wedding at Cana”

Barber Institute of Fine Arts, Birmingham, England

Courtesy Wikimedia Commons





Everything My Father gives is Mine

Said Jesus, who turned water into wine,

It is My kingdom, done with as I wish,

My flesh that was the baked bread in the dish


Emptiness a pulse of energy,

Every star an impulse come of Me,

Everything I give by My own will,

The cup that you have drunk from I can fill


As I was emptied also on the Cross

Of life itself, a true and final loss

I took again, as I can give to you,

As waiter from the water vessel drew


Sunlight that the sun had turned to wine

Your life itself I give, for it is Mine







Hubert and Jan van Eyck, “Adoration of the Mystic Lamb,” early 15th century

From the Ghent Altarpiece

Courtesy Wikimedia Commons





I saw them all give homage to the Lamb

The sacrifice, the heart, the great I Am

Holy women, holy bishops, priests

Saints and martyrs, none were greatest, least


All together on the flowered meadow

Where death was conquered to an end of sorrow

Joining round the altar, sacrifice

For every resurrection would suffice


Summon sunlight, sun forever more

No darkness or the bitterness of war,

Fear and sadness, loss of every love

Abolished by the sunlight from above


Love itself the radiance that shone,

A miracle, no heart to be alone

Because His blood poured freely in the cup—

Adore forever, drink salvation up



The Poetry of Pavel Chichikov / Last modified March 18, 2018/
Poems copyright 1994-2018, Pavel Chichikov/  
Proudly hosted by
Opinions expressed here are solely those of the author.