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Poem, Message Highlight Bartram MLK Convocations

Bolles Middle School Bartram Campus leaders held grade-level convocations throughout the week honoring the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Students were inspired to be dreamers and do-ers and to seek ways they could model the courage, integrity and compassion King demonstrated during his life.

Student leaders from each grade level shared presentations on King and challenged their peers to learn from his example.


One of the  highlights from each convocation was a reading by eighth-grader Esha Kasavaraju '26, who eloquently and powerfully shared her poem, “Dear Dr. King.” We hope you are inspired by her words:

Dear Dr. King

Dear Dr. King,

What a life

what courage.

What a specialty

what bravery.

You walked into something you knew was,

but did it.

Your reality was violence.

You saw prejudice.

You saw innocent humans live in fear.


The dangers, the segregation.

When you came to the job it was different than now,

it was so much scarier then.



what a word.

we look around now and see things you fought against embedded in our culture.

“Go back to where you came from,”

“You don’t belong here,”

“You’re a germ,”


the innumerable stereotypes that scare everyone of us every single day.

Our news plagued with violence against our fellow Americans.


what can we do to change this?


You fought against so so so much more.

You marched and hoped for better treatment.

Dear Dr. King,

now we want finish coloring the edges of the picture you left for us.

we want to put the last few pieces into our puzzles

we want to reach the finish line.


What can we learn from you?


It mesmerizes me,

the way you walk and the confidence you hold.

I’ve seen your poise

Taking me from the shy, little 4-year-old hiding behind her mom’s leg to a 14-year-old who wants to do something.

Taking to heart your words…

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that matter.”


I’ve seen the way people hide away from change because it’s “scary,”

but you changed through the “scary” – change was never meant to be easy.


Let’s make that change

the least we can do to respect you.

To at least have that confidence, head up, shoulders back, and dreams taller than The Statue of Freedom on top the Capitol building -- overlooking Washington D.C.


Dear Dr. King,

we can learn to see the sunshine

peering through the window.


The silver lining.


Dear Malcom x,

we can learn to see new changes,

see that something once a caterpillar is now a butterfly.


Dear Harriet Tubman,

we can use courage and grit to keep going --- “keep moving forward.”


Dear Rosa Parks and Homer Plessy,

we will not give into injustice – we will refuse to see inequality.


Dear Hiram Revels and Shirley Chisholm,

we know to go to what’s right with hard work.


We can learn.

We all must learn.


Let’s live together with the values you embedded in out country.


You have made it so I can walk without fear.

You have made it so my parents came here for opportunities.

You have made it to where many of my friends have the courage to be themselves.


We have work to do, but we’ll continue your accomplishments. You did so much, now were gonna finish this masterpiece together.

Sincerely, Esha