Three Pointers

by Noah Siela

You build the levee
but because you were raised Catholic
you let water destroy the town
because of your open-door policy.
Water’s a friendly stranger.
The town will endure.
They’ll build another gym
to drain three pointers from half court in
and a kid will carve his name
into the maple rafters just like you did.
When they tear it down
because of school consolidation
you’ll know exactly where your name is
because a kid you started a ditch fire with
will be the guy who hauls away the debris
in the heavily-financed bed of his Ford Super Duty
a little dusty in Star White.

Noah Siela lives and teaches in Missouri.