VANCOUVER – Vancouver poet Shannon Stewart shares a first glimpse of her tabloid inspired poems.
While standing in line at the supermarket many shoppers are intrigued by the eye-catching covers of the Weekly World News. In fact, one special shopper was so inspired by the craft and editorial of the tabloid that she began to write her own poetic “tabloid tales”.
With an MFA in Creative Writing, Shannon took her tales to a whole new level and is releasing her latest book Penny Dreadful. “Penny Dreadfuls were popular, cheaply produced 19th century magazines filled with brutal and sensationalist tales. Shannon revisits their grisly spirit through a series of meditations that examine the media’s obsession for luridness, be it tabloids or “respectable” newspapers.”
“Fable-like, ribald, and packing a powerful anti-puritanical punch, Penny Dreadful furnishes us with unsentimental X-rays of the contemporary world and its terrors.” The terrors and breaking headlines from the Weekly World News have truly inspired a remarkable poet. Here is a first glimpse at Shannon’s inspired poems.
Stay tuned for more tabloid tales!
SUPERMARKET LOBSTERS ESCAPE TANK & TERRORIZE SHOPPERS
What place is this? The sea
around them is dead, served
up on beds of ice. Fish eyes
goggle under fluorescents,
shelled shrimp a mountain
Who dreams such iniquity?
Smoked, skewered, shucked,
filets of gutted flesh spread
for viewing. Alone, alive,
the lobsters plot revenge,
at the blue rubber bands
wrapped around their claws.
Grip and crush, grip and crush,
a plan of action forms in the
saline tank. Swimmerets pummel
shells in anticipation, long stalks
of antenna sniff beyond the glass
for the perfect moment.
They know the weak spots.
Digits, ankles, the toddler
left unattended in aisle 2.
Bibs and finger bowls filled
with lemon are shunned
for the greater muck
of terror. Only blood
CHECK OUT THE ORIGINAL WWN ARTICLE:
BUY SHANNON’S BOOK, Penny Dreadful: