The Poetry of Pavel Chichikov


NEW! See Pavel's photos at Pavel's Camera. Recently added: Flag Day 2017, showing the retirement of the old colors.

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.

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.





Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly on Lantana

Photo by Debbie

Courtesy It’s All about Purple





Butterflies love lantana

Lantana loves the sun

Yellow flower in the sky


What butterfly loves you?

What angel sips your photosphere

The nectar of the night?


The sky is a lighted garden

Planted in the spring

Of everything






We stop before the Bitter Sea,

My guardian, but who is she?

Partly spirit, dragonfly

Stands with me, and there am I—

The surface white with salty foam

The sky a milky azure dome—

To cross that salt without her aid

Impossible, I am afraid—

But I will take you, come behind

Now be safe, have peace of mind


Long and slim my caretaker,

Bold she is, I cling to her,

Impassable her sky-blue veil   

Buoyant through the salt we sail,

Swift and without harm we go,

That which mummifies below,

Around the sea the barren hills,

The desiccating dryness kills—

Across the Dead Sea cut our wake

And we are safe, our passage take







Into the Garden

Photo by Pavel Chichikov





Stand at the end of the garden

Look through the frame of the arbor

Before you in perspective

A carpet laid forever


Each shining autumn flower

Gold and crimson, white

Of Dusty Miller, marigold

Displaying love’s delight


A carpet made for autumn suns

To rest their tired limbs,

Higher still His Majesty

Who turns the burning rim


Remembering the place we lived

See once again, the Lord forgives






Shagbark Hickory (Carya ovata)

Courtesy Nymans Garden




The coloring of the autumn leaves

Exhaustion of fertility

Scarlet, russet and the bronze

But gold of autumn hickory


Best loved of all, reminding of

God’s immanent immortal love


Which is a light of deepest gold

Leaves foretelling as do all

The golden things remaining old

Although in autumn they may fall


Best loved of all, reminding of

God’s innocent immortal love


All things that fall remind of these:

Golden ark and cherubim

These soon denuded hickories

Stripped like Christ and yet like Him


Best loved of all, reminding of

God’s light and His immortal love






Basking Turtles

Photo by Pavel Chichikov





I wish that I could lie out in the sun

As turtles do when hauled out on a stick,

Neck stretched out as mid-day has begun


There relax, repose and start to warm

From leather to the inmost parts of me

As turtle dreams begin to rise and form


Above the weeds and water nymphs I take

When warm enough to feed and find a mate

Armored against bass and pike and snake


Begone vain conscience, nervous to the core,

Alive and timeless, ancient, ever-new

I have the sun and who could ask for more?


But restless, ever restless is our clan

With cunning brain and some of us a tan






Konstantin Gorbatov (1876–1945), “The Invisible City of Kitezh”

Courtesy Wikimedia Commons





The city forbidden

The night for a hedge

The marvelous city submerged of Kitezh


How many times have I walked on your hills?

Seven times seven your Palatines

Seventy-seven your secretive shrines


The gateway obscured

Observe as you will the wall is oblique

When you desire there’s nothing to seek


Yet I have been there a memory says

Up and down hills and into the shops

But nothing’s for sale when the memory stops


Strolling and seeking the citizens go

In the dusk of remembrance filling the sky

Yearn for the sunlight but never know why


The city is waiting for all to arrive

Whose names are enrolled for the city to be

The city of marvels that rose from the sea


Then will the water run down from the walls

A sound of hosannas resound with the bells

And water forever rise up from the wells


Daylight immortal suffuse through the air

Light from the sunlight flow out through the streets

And those they have cherished and loved they will meet


"To the surprise of the Mongols, the town had no fortifications whatsoever. Its citizens didn't even intend to defend themselves and were engaged in fervent praying, asking God for their redemption. On seeing this, the Mongols rushed to the attack, but then stopped. Suddenly, they saw countless fountains of water bursting from under the ground all around them. The attackers fell back and watched the town submerge into the lake. The last thing they saw was a glaring dome of a cathedral with a cross on top of it. Soon, there were only waves."—Wikipedia





The Death of William the Conquerer---Abandoned and Despoiled by His Servants

J. Gilbert, The Illustrated London News

Courtesy Mercedes Rochelle, Historical Britain Blog





William the Bastard before he was dead:

“My body is stained with the blood I have shed”—

Made his confession, turned over and died,

A sturdy sarcophagus took him inside


As the priests and the Normandy mourners stood there,

His corpse which was corpulent fouled the air,

Burst like a bomb and the rest of them fled

From William the Conqueror when he was dead


Was he absolved, forgiven or not?

Would his soul like his body explosively rot?

What about us, with our butchery wars,

Will our crimes be absolved or will there be more?


Will we explode as the race decomposes,

The angels retreat with their wings to their noses?




(October 18 is the Feast of Saint Luke the Evangelist.)




Domênikos Theotokópoulos (El Greco) (1541–1614), “St. Luke”

Indianapolis Museum of Art

Courtesy Wikimedia Commons



LUKE 6: 1–5


As the Lord’s disciples

Walked the wheat field

Crushing the grain

To feed their hunger


As the farmer in Kansas

Tasted his sorghum

Crushing the grain

And savoring sweetness


So the Lord will crush the harvest grain

Lord of the Sabbath

Man of our sorrows

Before He tastes the world’s ripeness


Harvest of spirits, harvest of souls

Sweetness of love

Or bitter with sorrows

Or bitter with madness


The Poetry of Pavel Chichikov / Last modified October 15, 2017/
Poems copyright 1994-2017, Pavel Chichikov/  
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