Those who have studied literature as a subject or those who have an inclination towards it or those who have anything to do with literature may definitely have an idea about what Poetic Justice means. For the less initiated, here are some definitions from a web search. Just read on…
“The idea that good is rewarded and evil punished.”
“An outcome in which virtue triumphs over vice.”
“An outcome in a literary work, not necessarily a poem, in which the good are rewarded and the evil are punished, especially in ways that particularly fit their virtues or crimes. For example, a murderer may himself be murdered, or a thief will find himself penniless.”
“Moral doctrine that requires that the good be rewarded for their benevolent deeds and that the wicked be punished for their transgressions; the doctrine is particularly influential on the resolution of melodramas and sentimental comedies.”
“Poetic justice refers to a person receiving punishment intimately related to their crime or misdeed.”
What do these definitions tell us, that the good always get rewarded and the bad are punished; that the evil is meant to damned and nobility wins the fruit of heavens…
Now consider this. This definition too is a part of the search generated.
“The justice meted out by poets (in an ideal world) - where virtue is rewarded and vice punished.”
Take a look at this, especially at the brackets. It clearly states that virtue is rewarded and vice punished in an ideal world…and we don’t live in ideal world. We live in real world.
Personally, I have met people who remained a pure soul all their lives, keeping themselves sacrosanct, always helping others like good Samaritans, and keeping Lucifer away from taking over their souls, waiting for a poetic justice. But Godot never arrived…they never had poetic justice. The good always suffered and bad prospered…
The world is no place to imply what books have been telling us for so long. World has its own way to treat people. And that tells me that poetic justice is only met, either in books or films…
Welcome to the real world.