And justice for Jenelyn


Jenelyn Kennedy, born March 18 2001 tortured by her husband from 18 to 23 June 2020, died of head injuries and bruised internal organs caused by blunt force trauma.

This is a poem I did not want to share but I am doing so because Jenelyn’s story haunts me. She is the same age as my baby girl and she was the mother of two infant children.

I am a poet but I don’t know what to say to those children.

God grant them peace and joy. That will be blessing enough. And justice for Jenelyn.

And justice for Jenelyn
Tell me, Jenelyn, why must love grieve today?
Is there no mercy to grant us reprieve today?

Show me – sweet beauty – how can we trust love again?
When the ones whom we love – hatefully deceive today

What foolhardy hopes had caused you to run away?
Your youthful glee could never have perceived today

Now you have become a perverted Juliet – 
DAMN YOU ROMEO! She is decked in wreathes today!

So young, Jenelyn, so much more to have in life – 
There is joy, there is peace – but anger seethes today

Where were we when you needed us? Do we ask?
If we had known or imagined – these deeds today?

How the hands which covet may also kill this way
A lover turned torturer – we too bleed today

And amidst this horror – Men – look in the mirror
It is our soul not Jenelyn’s which is bereaved today

One dead daughter, one less wife – we are less one life –
Jenelyn’s – one more statistic bequeathed today

Oh, dear young mother, what do we tell your babes?
What good sermon of peace do they receive today?

Surely it must be some demonic force – I say
This cannot be what God has conceived today?!

I pray for justice, or vengeance, from God Himself!
Culprit husband – thanks to you – I believe today	

I am calling my namesake – Michael, Archangel 
For loves damned sake, let us your swift sword cleave today!

This poem was offered to the Kennedy family through a friend attending the haus krai an funeral last year.

Published by Ples Singsing

Ples Singsing is envisioned to be a new platform for Papua Niuginian expressions of creativity, ingenuity and originality in art and culture. We deliberately highlight these two very broad themes as they can encompass the diverse subjects, from technology, medicine and architecture to linguistics, music, fishing, gardening et cetera. Papua Niuginian ways of thinking, living, believing, communicating, dying and so on can cover the gamut of academic, journalistic or opinionated writing and we believe that unless we give ourselves a platform to talk about and discuss these things in an open, free and non-exclusively academic space that they may remain the fodder for academics, journalists and other types of writers alone. New social media platforms have given every individual a personal space to share their feelings and ideas openly, sometimes without immediate censure. The Ples Singsing writer’s blog would like to provide another more structured platform for Papua Niuginian expressions in written, visual and audio formats while also providing some regulation of the type and content of materials to be shared publicly.

One thought on “And justice for Jenelyn

  1. Apart from the exclamation & question marks (most of which interrupt without good cause), a poem of relevance, excellence and passion. Poetry for our time – bad as this time may be.

    It is one of those poems that evidences that poetry is capable of much greater emotional impact, followed by insight, an intellectual process, than prose, however polemic.

    Thanks Michael


    Keith Jackson AM Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 1 person

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