"We Will Fade into You"
We were not the first people --
we remember others in our histories
and our myths -- but we were alone
when you walked out of the east.
When you came into our territory,
sometimes we ran from each other,
sometimes we fought, and sometimes
we lay down and rolled in the furs.
Now there are more of you
and fewer of us every year, like
the ice shrinking before the grass.
It is for us as it was for the old ones.
So we leave you our stone tools,
our choppers and scrapers and blades.
We leave you our necklaces of
animal teeth and seashells.
We leave you our handprints
on cave walls and our bone flutes.
We leave you, too, a little of ourselves,
painted in freckles and foxfire hair.
Even as we dwindle,
we will fade into you,
two slowly becoming one.
When we walk out of this world
into history, you will walk alone,
but something of us will remain in you.
* * *
Read about Homo sapiens migration routes and see a map.
Neanderthal creativity includes a wide range of items. Read about their tools and see a picture of stone flakes.
Neanderthal necklaces and seashell jewelry have been found.
They left their handprints on cave walls.
This is a bone flute. You can listen to it online.
Neanderthal genes have left behind numerous traits including red hair.