Being the daughter of an internationally admired fashion icon is daunting enough, but Caroline Kennedy says she was even more awed by her regally turned out grandmas on both sides of her famous family.

“My grandmothers were the most correct and elegant women I have ever known, “ writes the fifty-something child of the late Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, whose new poetry anthology, “She Walks In Beauty,”celebrates the gifts and mysteries of womanhood. “Thinking about my grandmothers now, I understand that it was their faith, bravery, and curiosity that made them beautiful.”

"She Walks in Beauty: A Woman's Journey Through Poems" selected and introduced by Caroline Kennedy (Elizabeth Lund)

As for her equally imperious maternal grandmother, Janet Auchincloss, Kennedy explains that she too had firm opinions about clothes.”My mother became famous for creating her own style, but she learned a lot from her mother,” she recalls of Mrs. Onassis who died in 1994, and Mrs. Auchincloss who passed away five years earlier. “Ever since they fought about her wedding dress, she steered my grandmother’s critical comments away from her, and toward the length of my brother’s hair, the social deterioration of fashion in general, and my summer wardrobe in particular.”