A Love Letter to You



by Bianca Adger

I sit in an old art room on top of a table staring back at all the little beautiful brown faces that depend on me to be their person. They are loud and happy and all talking over each other. “I feel like every time we talk about something that deals with black people, all of the white kids turn around and look at me,” one of them is saying. They are speaking my truth! Whenever I’m in a faculty meeting, I feel like all the white eyes turn and look at me whenever something comes up about race.

Today we are talking about a book. They explain how their teacher tells the class that the N-word is in the book, but they will skip over it and not say it.  “They don’t even know what that word means to us,” one yells over the banter. I ask questions to try to unpack their feelings. I try to soothe the racial tension they feel sitting in a predominantly White institution constantly surrounded by whiteness, constantly code-switching, and constantly feeling unsafe in the space. 

Any time they bring their true authentic selves to school, someone calls them aggressive so they try their hardest not to bring themselves to school. Instead a shadow of them shows up.

BE LOUD with who you are!

Question:  “Did they explain why they’re not saying the N-word.”

Answer: “No” 

Question:  “Did they explain where the “N” word comes from and why it is hurtful to Black people?”

Answer: “No” 

Question: “Do you feel safe” 

Answer: “No.”

Being Black does not equal AGGRESSION.

I change my hair like I change my clothes and YES, ITS MINE…. I paid for it

NO, I AM NOT the encyclopedia of all things Black because I rock locs, have Black skin, and call you out. 

I mean, call you in!


In our space, loud doesn’t equate to aggression, it equates to joy… BLACK JOY

And we celebrate how our crowns change with a whim, basking in our own versatility radiating in our own glory

In our space, we are unapologetically Black 

we are Blacky Black BLAck 

In our space, we know our worth. 

We dance in the spirit of our ancestors 

we are because they were

We take pride in the realization that we are our ancestors’ wildest dreams 




SEE our Blackness

OUR story didn’t start with the “N” word

And it won’t end with it either


We are

I am their person because they need someone to hold their weight 

I am their person because they need someone to lift their chin 

I am their person because they need someone to fix their crown

I am 

I am black like the radiant ocean floor


We are 

We are black like the deep old earth 

We fill space and time with 











we are Blacky Black BLAck 

We are the lunar eclipse in the middle of the day that no one saw coming for a hundred years


We are the dew on the highest leaf in the densest forest on the oldest tree

We are love

We love

We are Black love 

We are joy when the soul rediscovers it 

We are our ancestors moving through space and time reclaiming all that was lost

We are here 

This blog post is part of the #31DaysIBPOC Blog Series, a month-long movement to feature the voices of indigenous and teachers of color as writers and scholars. Please CLICK HERE to read yesterday’s blog post by Nawal Qarooni (and be sure to check out the link at the end of each post to catch up on the rest of the blog series).

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s