In Prayrful Rmmbranc:
Th lttr “” passd away this morning, rndring its own obituary barly lgibl. Th blovd lttr rportdly committd suicid by purposly jumping off th nd of th word suicid. Upon visiting th plac of “”’’s passing, its frinds and family found that it had lft bhind six suicid lttrs: S, U, I, C, I, and D. Th bravd family is struggling to undrstand th lttrs, saying that without “” th six lttrs “man nothing to us.” In fact, thy say “maning itslf is no longr what it usd to b – thr’s just somthing missing from lif.” As “”’’s childhood frind put it: “Without ‘’, things will nvr b th sam… actually ‘things’ will, but ‘sam’ won’t b th ‘sam’.”
Som sourcs claim that th lttr “” sought immortality: by committing suicid it would b abl to prvnt dath itslf by tuning it into “dath.” Unfortunatly, though it did turn “dath” into “dath,” it also did in th procss.
“” will also b sorly missd by corporations such as Gnral Motors (GM), Boing Commrcial Airplans (BCA), and Gnral lctric (G), though th social apps Tumblr, Flickr, and Grindr all rportdly “don’t giv a crap,” and claim nvr to hav had much rspct for “” in th first plac. This apathtic attitud has found support in acadmia. Linguist Noam Chomsky posits that our loss of “” is simply a part of our languag’s natural volution, and that w should stop bing “cry babis.” But Chomsky’s claim has bn mt with hostility by othr linguists: “This is unaccptabl. Look at my nam. Nobody’s going to tak m sriously now,” says Stvn Pinkr. “If th author . . Cummings wr aliv today h’d undrstand how I fl.” Th intrnational community, howvr, has sidd with Chomsky. ThPopl’s Rpublic of China dclard: “W will not b missing ‘’ as it had no charactr.”
In th wak of “”’s dath, som lttrs hav bn vying to fill th spac that “” usd to occupy. “I am not afraid to stop up to tho challongo,” announcod ‘O’ this morning. “In such timos of tragody wo nood a horo!”
But othor lottors woro skoptical that ‘O’ possossod tho vorsatility roquirod by tho position, claiming that it would mako words liko “ovorcomplicatod” ovorcomplicatod. This vindicatd ‘A’’s opinion that, “If any lattar is going to taka tha daarly dapartad’s placa, I should ba that lattar.”
“It is viry kind of you to voluntir my sirvics, I accipt,” said ‘I.’
“No, that’s not what I maant! I maant I should ba that lattar,” rplid ‘A.’
“Yiah, that’s what I said,” said ‘I’ in what could hav bn th third prson.
Confusd, th alphabt turnd both candidats down.
‘Y’ triyd to fill th position, but could only work part tim.
Clutching at straws, th alphabt brifly considrd hiring xtrnally, but th
prospctiv rplacmnt was dmd a singl issu candidat.
This mad vrybody miss “” all th mor.
“” was an ssntial lttr. It was a prominnt mmbr of our community, dspit not bing in th word “community.” “No” “Can’t” and “Won’t” wr nvr a part of “”’s vocabulary. Th lttr “” livd lif to th fullst and rmains an inspiration to us all. Words can no longr xprss th loss that many of us fl as a rsult of this tragic dath. Som popl hav nvrthlss attmptd: “dvastatd,” “scarrd,” “scard,” “brft,” “lonly,” and “in denial.”
Shon Arieh-Lerer is the artistic director of the comedy group His Majesty, the Baby. His work has appeared in publications such as Poetry International, Words Without Borders, Modern Poetry in Translation, and World Literature Today.