And With Keen Gaze He Peers Into the Night

The watchman stands upon the city wall
And with keen gaze he peers into the night
He’s charged with spotting dangers one and all
And if he spots it, call the army’s might

But when he spies a group upon the path
Of women, children, sick, infirm, and old
He stays his horn, calls not the army’s wrath
Instead he makes a choice both wise and bold

He’s heard about the troubles far away
And so the group arrives to open gate
The watchman smiles and says, “come in and stay,
And may your welcome here be truly great.”

The safety felt by those behind the wall
Should be a gift to share with one and all


When I started writing this piece, I intended for the watchman to turn away the refugees and have this piece be a commentary on how so many of us would willingly deny the safety of others, merely so that we can cling to our comforts. In the end, I chose to have the watchman show compassion instead. I could not work everything that I wanted to say into this sonnet, but the moral of my tale is that safety and comfort are not the same thing. I am sharing this with dVerse, where the prompt is “What does the watchman see?”


13 thoughts on “And With Keen Gaze He Peers Into the Night

  1. Wonderful little tale Bryan . I am glad he had the wisdom not to call attention to them. Watchmen have to be in the know and have that wisdom

  2. We have a choice to accept them or not ~ I am aware of the migration of people to Europe and how some of them die along the way ~ It is good for the watchmen to show compassion for them ~ A lovely sonnet ~

  3. Like Bjorn, you use the sonnet form effectively. This piece certainly captured my attention. I thought, at first, the this would be a negative outcome metaphor, which I would have done, so it is way cool to deny us the obvious & morph this into a morality tale.

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