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Arts & Culture

Just Add Water: Houston Students Leave Hidden “Rain Poems” Around Buffalo Bayou Park

The project will last for the month of April, which is National Poetry Month.


Young Houston poets have hidden a series of poems around Buffalo Bayou Park for National Poetry Month.

Called "Rain Poems," they're written in an invisible paint that only becomes visible when it's wet.

"Because rain took on such an ominous role in our lives during Hurricane Harvey, we decided that we would create this experience for people so that something positive could come out of rain, or out of water," said Robin Reagler, executive director of Writers in the Schools, the group that organized the project. "And so that’s why the poems are ‘rain poems’ and they come to us only in that particular moment."

For days when there's not a cloud in sight, all the poems are also located near water fountains, so that people can splash water on the ground to see them.

Houston Youth Poet Laureate Jackson Neal helped curate the sidewalk poems, and wrote one about Houston as a "mythical landscape" for the project.

Mimi Chiquet
A "rain poem" by Houston Youth Poet Laureate Jackson Neal.

Neal said he hopes the project gets people inspired and excited about poetry.

"I love this project particularly because of the way it extends the poem past the page," he said. "I think a lot of time people meet poems in the classroom and that can be really stifling, so to extend poetry into the actual geography of Houston is such a pleasure."

Here’s where you can find the poems in Buffalo Bayou Park:

  • Waterworks Visitor Center
  • Allen Parkway / Sabine Street
  • Eleanor Tinsley Park
  • Rosemont Bridge
  • Inside the dog park
  • Top of stairs near dog park