April 25 Poetry Challenge Interior Landscape

Sometimes characters need an end
when I write them. They are too
loud or too volatile or too not
long for this world. It is something.
I try not to do it too often.
I don’t want it expected.
I think about my characters
like I think about that woman
at the gym who rattles on and on
about her narcisstic children
and vaccines being a government conspiracy.
She helps me write sometimes.
I imagine the back side of my cast iron pan
smacking her round taut face.
My hand reaching the back of her neck
and pushing her into her own words
making her taste their emptiness.
Their vacuous bathing in UV protected light.
I don’t hate my characters
or the woman at the gym.
But sometimes the story line necessitates
a change. I have a long memory.
And normally a long fuse.
I remember when the gym woman
once made fun of my children.
I smile and leave the gym sweaty and
exercise sated wishing my mind
was as clear, wishing her silence once more.