Your photo, your face, your name. A brief splash of color pasted on the door of the neighborhood blimpie's. I've walked by the store so many times, always stopping at every other store in the strip mall. Never walking in. I'd see the people inside, beautiful young people, who looked like they had no care in the world, eating their sandwiches and drinking their fountain soda. It was a world of laughter, bright joie de vivre spilling from the doors, neighborhood friends gathered at the table.
Today when i walk by, an empty silence. The only illumination a backlight behind the counter, the only color the flowers on the door. Oh Amir Chalabi, my heart breaks for your family. Gathered to mourn your passing, they will tell each other stories of your bright smile and weep. Your mother will never look at another child without remembering you. Your father will look at other men and think of you. Time will bring its cold forgetful comfort, but you have lived, and brightened their days, and their memories. As for me, I only saw an image on a closed door, and the epitaphs your classmates left. A few flowers and scrawled words of comfort for your parents. And it near to broke my heart.
Dear child, I did not know you. I do not know your parents. I do not eat at the restaurant that was closed by your passing. But death has come and gone, and I would that it had not.