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The Watcher

Epistolary Poem

By Robbie CheadlePublished 5 months ago Updated 4 months ago 1 min read
With thanks to jean wimmerlin from Unsplash

Dear Ranger

I am sorry

I didn't oblige you

And make an appearance

For your paying guests.

You can't blame me

For being wary

Of people.

After all

The guest farm

Right next door

Allows canned hunting

By wealthy tourists.

The lions are bred

And raised by hand

In captivity


Their caregivers

Release them

Into a caged enclosure

To be hunted down

As trophies.


Leopards are not spared

This barbaric treatment

Although fewer of us

Are murdered this way

Our dead heads removed

To grace the walls

Mouths gaping open

In a humiliated grimace

Called a fierce pose

By the false hunters.

Run off our traditional land

By grasping humans

Who have the right

To life and liberty,

Freedom from slavery

And torture,

Freedom of opinion

And expression,

The right to work

And to education.

What about me?

Here in the reserve

I'm relatively safe

Provided I don't follow

My natural instincts

To travel and

Stay within the fences

Built by you

I know you're a good one

But frankly,

It still grates me.

Then you bring

Truck loads of visitors

Who chatter


And gawk

while rattling chip packets

And taking photographs.


Nothing is sacrosanct,

You invade

Every part

Of my life

... Eating

... Sleeping

... Mating

My babies


For prattling spectators

Hooing and cooing

Making fools of themselves.

And so I hide

Deep within

The long grass

Or up high

In a tree,

Dreaming away

The long, quiet days.


I shake a whisker

Or twitch an ear

Sending the viewers

Into a frenzy

Hopefully anticipating

A leopard sighting

I lie

And grin


And now

Who's watching



The Leopard in the tree

nature poetry

About the Creator

Robbie Cheadle

Robbie Cheadle loves to create in a variety of mediums including words, cake, fondant, charcoal, and oil pastels. She enjoys writing fantasy stories for children, poetry, and paranormal stories for adults in historical settings.

Reader insights

Nice work

Very well written. Keep up the good work!

Top insights

  1. Compelling and original writing

    Creative use of language & vocab

  2. Expert insights and opinions

    Arguments were carefully researched and presented

  3. Eye opening

    Niche topic & fresh perspectives

  1. Heartfelt and relatable

    The story invoked strong personal emotions

  2. On-point and relevant

    Writing reflected the title & theme

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Comments (7)

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  • Patricia Furstenberg5 months ago

    Your poem was like a leopard leap, Roberta. Swift and dangerous - but this time to the big cat itself. I enjoyed your poetry storytelling. Compelling and an eye opener.

  • Diana Peach5 months ago

    Wow, Robbie. What a poem. Canned hunting is sickening to me. I feel less distressed about preserves. At least the animals are safe, and free to hide if they choose. This was a powerful poem, my friend.

  • Jan Sikes5 months ago

    Oh my goodness, Robbie. You captured the essence of the animal's emotions, along with the cruelty of men. Outstanding work!

  • Dan Antion5 months ago

    This is beautiful, Robbie. I've never understood the desire people have for hunting. I guess this guy is better off, but I understand. Well done.

  • Daniel Kemp5 months ago

    I didn't know what to expect, but I'm HUGELY delighted to have read it. It is truly wonderful, Robbie. You deserve enormous congratulations to have created all that.

  • J. S. Wade5 months ago

    Inhumane un-humans have baited and held guided hunts for centuries displaying our ability to be the most evil creatures on earth. Though painful, this letter needs to be heard. 🥰. Thank you.

  • Donna Renee5 months ago

    I like this one a lot, Robbie! Very unique entry.

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