Kissing Cousins

Our closest kin in the kingdom of species

are the bonobo, slim, elegant, seductive.

The only non-humans who laugh and who kiss,

these simian sisters to contentious chimpanzees

meet potential aggression with offers of sex.

Surely precursors of last century’s hippies,

both choose love over war.

These primates judge the status of males

by the mothers’ position within the pack,

a striking parallel to human societies

back in the times of goddess and crone,

thus prompting speculation

on how we might have evolved

with one or two fewer mutations of genes.