"If in the first act you have hung a pistol on the wall, then in the following one it should be fired." -- Anton Chekhov
Chekhov declared that it's clearly imperative
That a gun given billing must duly be fired.
The bullet obligingly cinches the narrative,
Sating the thirst that the gun first inspired.
Yet the world is awash in objects inutile,
Which clog our disorderly narrative streams.
So why should a playwright adhere to so futile
A diktat pertaining to props in a scene?
Myself for example, habitually arming
The darkness that swaddles me, inkily deep,
My mind so occulted its doubly alarming
To grasp the black Kimber, now sprung from its keep.
The prop having found its way on to the stage,
My untethered demons start chorally keening,
Quite certain they know what the gun must presage:
That this is the moment that holds all the meaning.