“See that you are on the watch; for you do not know when the time will be.
piling up together
cosmic comic crash
stored for tomorrow
the wokest watcher
awake to time
and sidestep time
turn a blind eye
to flow and function
rise to this moment
A Reader can see how each apocalyptic phrase has a reversal that brings an assurance of hope closer. Wars and rumors of wars—Don’t be alarmed, this isn’t the end; Earthquake and famine—Only the beginning of birthpangs; Betrayal of friends and family to their death—Enduring in mercy will bring healing; and Tribulation beyond tribulation—A time of suffering will be shortened.
Sabin164sees in these reversals what is not explicitly stated:
What is perhaps even more striking is what the Markan Jesus is notdoing: he is not pointing to these disasters as punishment for sin; he is not telling his disciples that if they are virtuous they will avoid them. Rather his warnings to his disciples are directed elsewhere: against being led astray by imposters of him (vv. 5–6); against being anxious at the moment of trial (v. 11); against being deceived by false prophets and false messiahs (vv.21–22). Jesus’ warnings, in other words, are not directed toward the issues of nation or cosmos but aimed at the psyche—its vulnerability, its desire to be in control, its susceptibility to deceit.
Specifically about “watching”, Sabin1161–162remarks,
Covenantal theology tends to be linear, looking to the past and future. Creation theology tends to be circular, aware of repeating patterns. Wisdom theology, springing from the latter, is focused on the present. The urgency of Wisdom’s watchfulness, therefore, is not to be confused with the urgency of eschatological hope. The alternating time-frames in Mark permit both kinds of expectations, but the prevailing emphasis is on Wisdom’s here and now…. It is a wisdom linked to an acceptance of the vastness of the divine mystery. Jesus as a teacher of Wisdom does not impart knowledge or “secrets” of the future but calls his disciples to a profound “wakefulness” to the mystery of the present moment.