Memory Number One

He was 4 or 3,
        at the edge of memory,
When he saw a dead possum
        in the road.

For 80 years it visited
        his thoughts;
Nothing before —
        not a mother’s loving gaze,
        not a father’s good cheer,

Just a tail carelessly touching
        a bloodied nose,
And two button eyes, staring
        at god, at him,
        at nothing.