Shocking Sonnets: Check Out These JAWS Inspired Poems!


SHOCK writer and columnist Nigel Parkin is also an accomplished poet. Here, Parkin lays a slew of sonnets on us, based on key moments from Steven Spielberg’s iconic1975 horror adventure JAWS.




Universal Blackness

We open with the Universal Earth
In space, suspended in blackness, between
Stars pulsing and singing with deep sea sounds.
The alien world of the ocean, before
The Abyss of Cameron a suggestion
That what lies in that dark water is a
Thing From Another World. Then fade to black.
This is inner space now, with heaving bass
Stirring something somewhere deep within. Fear.
Cellos chop and slice as we surge forwards,
Seeing through the beast’s eyes, hunting, rising,
Mixing fear with desire. Then faces. Fire.
And at the end of the party, a girl
Holds a man’s gaze. Between them, the sea. Black.



True Terror

The girl. The sea. We know the scene.
The gentle tolling of the bell as she
Swims further into darkness and hovers,
Treading water, sweeping her heavy hair
Away from blinking eyes, blurring the sky.
Happy. Calm. Before the tug.
That’s the true moment of terror. Right there.
A pull from somewhere below, hidden, unknown.
It comes again, with pain she cannot fathom.
Soon this thing will seize her, drag her, tear her –
This thing unseen by all but felt as fear.
And only we will hear her cries to heaven.
Thrashing in darkness her question shakes us –
Death cannot come like this, can it? Can it?




‘You don’t go in the water, do ya?!’
The old man’s smile is gently mocking, bright
With silly, thoughtless fun, just like his hat,
Just like the boys now splashing as they throw
Themselves into the blue, with innocent delight.
But Brody looks beyond all this. ‘You’re tight,’
His wife observes as she attempts to ease
His stress with gentle, loving hands. But there,
Out there, some thing is looking back, unseen,
Yet holding him in thrall and rising to
Its task. He senses it but cannot speak
Until it’s all too clear. He’s shouting now
But no-one needs to hear. The signs are there –
The lilo, punctured, drifting. Blood. The tear.




Ben Gardner

Freeze the screen on just that face, that pallid
Moon in full dark sky, a shrimp emerging
From the lunar crater that was once…yes!
His eye! Freeze that shot. Go on. Hold it there.
And stare. You need to look beyond the shock.
There’s something greater working here, forcing
Us to swim back down to this strange meeting
With our fear. The thing that made us leap now
Makes us think. We see with bulging eye and
Gaping mouth that bloated face, that seems so
Horribly familiar, a rotting mask
Of terror hanging in this splintered frame.
A picture forcing us to ask is this
The glass? The mirror? God, are we the same?