Poetry by D.W. Walker

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Just Deserts

An extinct author, slumped over the blood soaked keyboard,
The opening words of the penultimate chapter of her 39th novel,
In which the feisty heroine was to face down the gun-toting villain,
Just as in the previous 38 novels,
Remain static on the screen, doomed to inevitable conjecture about
Who is the villain, what drove them, will they now get off?

A feisty heroine, slumped in an armchair,
Face rigid, unseeing,
Spared her 39th encounter with a gun,
But wondering if she has a future.
Is the death of an author the precursor of a mini-series?

A confused police Inspector, unsure of their role.
Are they the latest winner of the Lestrade Award
For obstinacy, obstructiveness and obtuseness
Or the sensitive, troubled, caring soul who understands
The mindsets that drive people to extremes?

The defence lawyer shambles Rumpole-like to the lectern.
There are no precedents for convictions for authorcide, he says,
Even when said author commits serial charactercide
And gleefully puts their feisty heroine under such repeated stress
That her severe PTSD makes a lethal reaction inevitable.

The judge agrees.
The author is convicted of crimes against fiction,
Their royalties confiscated,
Their characters sent for counselling
Their publisher restricted to true crime and political scandal,
Their readers left to find another world full of dead bodies.

Copyright D.W. Walker, 2021

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