“Brown Eyed Girl” by Edison Jennings

Edison Jennings


Genetic analysis of a Denisovan fossil,
dubbed “Brown Eyed Girl,” reveals
kinship to modern humans.

So close, we’re kin,
according to the DNA
unraveled from your genes:
brown eyes, hair, and skin.

You bequeathed two teeth
and a mote of finger bone,
coded scant remains
that reveal your life was brief.

My short-lived daughter, too,
had brown eyes and hair.
That makes us kin:
she through me and me through you.

from Rattle #39, Spring 2013
Tribute to Southern Poets


Edison Jennings (Virginia): “My interest in poetry began by happenstance in middle school. I began trying to write it in high school, but I wasn’t committed. Twenty-four years ago, while serving in the Navy, I got serious. When I separated from the Navy, I enrolled in the Warren Wilson Program for Writers, and I have been trying to write poetry ever since. I’m not sure why. Poetry is hard work, and I’m kind of lazy. However, I am also often confused. Maybe that’s why I continue to try and write the stuff because poetry might be a type of ‘broken drinking goblet,’ to borrow from Robert Frost, that I fill with water, which, when drunk, makes me ‘whole again beyond confusion.’” (web)

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