The rains came down

Nearly a year ago, I was watching flood water creep into homes and cover the landmarks of my adopted hometown of Nashville, a city I love.

And now, a year later, I’m sitting in Nashville watching the farmland and towns of my childhood flood in Southeast Missouri. Poplar Bluff, Mo., is only about 40 miles from my hometown. I’ve read an account of a water rescue of a man in Malden, Mo., about 8 miles south of my hometown.

I’ve looked at the pictures. I’ve called home. My family is fine, since we don’t live on a river, but the there is standing water everywhere, including in my parents’ basement, and it’s pretty clear that little corn will get planted in Southeast Missouri this spring.

There’s nothing I can do, but look at the pictures and pray for the people I know who live in those areas. People I grew up with. People I love. It’s almost impossible for me to even get to Southeast Missouri anyway, since the Ohio River at Cairo is closed and other routes are likely just as bad.

It’s surreal to be sitting in Nashville a year after catastrophic flooding and watch it happen again all around my hometown. To feel helpless. To be reminded. To remember. To feel far away and directly affected simultaneously, even if I’m miles and miles away from the flood water.

So, keep Southeast Missouri in your prayers. We in Nashville know the destruction a flood can bring well. But in a rural, agricultural area like my hometown, this is particularly bad, since it’s destroying crops, keeping crops from getting planted, and flood waters can easily destroy the perfectly graded fields farmers paid thousands to have done.

But hope is not lost. The rains may come down and the floods come up, but this, too, as terrible as it is, will pass. And there is life after the storm.

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