Where Now the Watchmen

Mark Rothko www.nga.gov

Mark Rothko   www.nga.gov

Where now the watchmen
who stationed on high towers
alert the border of the barbarians
alarm the markets of arsonists
terrors from with`in & out

Let them all sound the cry!
For the wolves are at our gates
Pitch has been poured at our doors
and awaits the flashing torches
to rusted hinges & arid oak

While the aristocrats sleep
stupored by all their indulgences
the leaders celebrate the latest polls
assuring them that they are loved
at least as they are despised

The poor rummage through
fast`food dumpsters for bread
roasting rats over their burn`barrels
in the alleys of the homes fore`
closed by the feckless banks

We are a tapestry unraveling
Once the envy of all the nations
we have become freedom’s caricature
Once the blue`print of integrity
we are now marketers of lies

“I will stand at my watch`post,
and station myself on the rampart;
I will keep watch to see what he will say to me
and what he will answer concerning my complaint.” ~ Habakkuk 2:1


About Peter Notehelfer

I'm a retired people person who now finds the time to watch the little details of the world without worrying about being watched by anyone . . . I live on an Island north of Seattle with my wife named Ellen, a yellow dog named McGee, a yellow cat named Gatzby, and four fine chickens . . . I read fiction, bake bread, smoke salmon, and fish whenever the weather allows . . . Oh, and yes, I try to write a poem every day simply to avoid senility!
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2 Responses to Where Now the Watchmen

  1. I like the walled city metaphor, and you’ve got some lovely alliteration going on there. If your barbarians had been wielding axes, I’d have joined Paul in his judgment of prophetic.


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