It was swamp between the rivers and creeks
of melted snow, men claiming ground by boat,
a century of floods and drought before the dam
slowed the river down to fit furrows and ditches
to feed the world, the course of water left in crops
we farmed with mules before the teams of tractors
grew so big and smart as not to need a man
to guide them. We made towns look like cities
with cool conditioned air, still digging deeper
for pockets of water where no river flows.
Someday, she will take her ground back
from the idols and graven images of rock star
convenience. Someday we may balance joy
with work instead of wages, find eyes to see
the obvious is less than what we think we need.