Pastor pens viral love poem to Houston in wake of Harvey damage

5:11 p.m Wednesday, Aug. 30, 2017 Austin360 Home
American-Statesman Staff
Emergency responders help Carlos Peterson, 10, on Tuesday after rescuing him from his house on Park Row Drive adjacent to the Addicks Reservoir. JAY JANNER / AMERICAN-STATESMAN

In the wake of damage caused by Hurricane Harvey in Houston earlier this week, those with ties to Houston have taken to social media to express their love for a city that has shown resilience, strength and community in a time of heartbreak and devastation.

South Carolina pastor Jeremy Rutledge, who previously lived in Houston, perhaps captured the best love letter yet, penning a poem that many have said perfectly captures the spirit of the city.

“I was surprised how many people thought what I wrote was a prayer. It wasn't a prayer — it was a poem to a place and people I love,” Rutledge wrote on Facebook the day after he shared the poem.

The poem reads in part:

if you want to pray 

for Houston 

raise a bottle of Shiner 

to the gray sky 

and say that 130 mile an hour winds 

and 9 trillion gallons of rain 

are no match 

for a city of such life 

and diversity 

you can fill up our bayou 

but you will never rain 

on our parade


And yes, the poem even includes a subtle dig at Dallas. Because of course it does. Read the poem on Rutledge’s Facebook page here or read it in its entirety below.

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