Poems of the Week

Possum Pouch

by Ruth S. Baker

“Young marsupials including possums, koalas and wombats require pouches to grow. Without their mothers they rely on hand-stitched products from donors. Other animals such as flying foxes also require pouches to help their recovery [from Australia’s bushfires], and rescuers say koalas need mittens for their burnt paws.”
—The Guardian

I’m planning to cosset a possum,
Or knit a lost wombat a womb;
Make mittens with blossoms across ’em,
And save some koalas from doom.
Observe: from Detroit to the Netherlands,
They’re all being stitched for by turns,
As humans in grieving-together-lands
Sew wraps for marsupials’ burns.
I like to imagine a flying fox
Enjoying a hand-fashioned snood,
While Kanga’s relieved we’re supplying socks
For her and her blistery brood.
Let’s labor until there’s an over-plus
For wombat, koala, and roo:
To give them some future in spite of us,
It’s the least (and the most) we can do.