There are cells in your nose that respond to a rose,
Which, in some ways, is clearly terrific.
There are cells in your skin that sense pricks of a pin,
Which is useful, and fairly specific….
But imagine a cell specializing so well,
It detects only one of earth’s denizens!
Yes, imagine a neuron that only will turn on
For pictures of Jennifer Aniston!
Too bizarre? Well, get this: such neurons exist,
Based on research of this new millennium.*
So what else might inspire picky neurons to fire
Deep inside the hard case of the cranium?
*R.Q. Quiroga et al. (2005), Nature 435: 1102-1107
Dr. Greg Crowther teaches anatomy and physiology at Everett Community College (WA). His peer-reviewed articles on enhancing learning with content-rich music have collectively been cited over 100 times.