Letter from Sayantani DasGupta

Dear Students,

When I hear you speak,
your voices so strong and yes so clear
I think,
These are the heroes we do not deserve
but need.
These are our ambassadors from another place,
these are our truth tellers with
no time for platitudes
no tolerance for payoffs
I mean, DUH.
No excuses and most of all
no BS

When I see you standing so straight
beside one another
mourning, researching, crying,
speaking truth to power,
I think
These are time travelers from the future
here to guide us to safety
even as
our society stands on the edge
of a precipice
jumping eagerly like lemmings
into the darkness.

We the people in order to form
We the people
A perfect union
We the adults
We your country
We have not been careful
with you
Our most precious natural resource
When we should be holding you
even now
especially now
gently, high
above our heads.
Fistfuls of light
beacons to guide our way.

Dear students

If I could give you all my words, I would say
take them.
I do not know what to do with them like you do.
Take them and shoot them at the false sky
like arrows.
Make it rain down justice
like a mighty stream.
In Eastern traditions, the master knows
the greatest teaching
comes from sitting at the feet of students
and I would tell you
we are sitting at your feet
we do not have time
for pretty metaphors now.

So I will tell you
we are standing
rising up
with you
behind you
beside you.
Our hearts full of your faces,
our hearts full of your words
our hearts full of your truth.
And we say
We are with you
We are proud of you
We are listening.

— Sayantani DasGupta, author and mother