Irrational Hatred

Natural Swirls – Kristen Hardy
Joshua Ward

I have a dangerous proposition

For you today, standing here in Honors 

English class. I’m here to tell you that

I despise the English language. Okay, 

I don’t mean ALL of the English language,

But I think we can agree that a lot 

Of what we accept in the way we write 

And speak every day is ridiculous. 

Many of our English rules are like orphans, 

With no obvious source or home. We must 

Get rid of some of the more senseless,

Confusing rules we use, so that English 

Can be MUCH easier to learn and write.

One of the most infuriating 

Examples of the absurdity of 

The English language is the homophone. 

These words just hang out like rats behind a 

Dumpster, waiting to bite someone who 

Uses them incorrectly in an essay! 

For example, take to, two, and too, 

Three words that, when spoken together, sound 

Like some ritual to summon demons. 

As an entire English-speaking 

Population, we decided that 

Instead of coming up with three completely 

Different words, we should use three words that sound 

Exactly alike and randomly 

Assign their spelling and meaning! But we 

Didn’t stop there (or they’re or their). English 

Homophones lurk everywhere, just waiting 

(Or weighting) to grab you and pull you under. 

Sell or cell – one of them you use on eBay, 

And the other one placesputs you in jail. 

Beet or beat – one of them is a nasty 

Vegetable, and the other one leaves 

You bruised and bloody (looking like a beet). 

I could go on for (or four) days (or daze)! 

Now, what’s the deal with silent letters? 

Somewhere along the way, we all decided 

It was okay to just throw a few 

Extra letters in some of our words for 

No good reason. They’re like zombie mutants,

Dead and having no purpose, waiting 

Around dark corners to take you down. 

You know them –- see, right there – KNOW! Where did that 

“K” come from? They lie in wait to knife you 

In the back. Or nife you in the bak! 

Totally useless! Sometimes, we even 

Toss in more than one, like in high or thigh. 

Could you really not understand the word 

If that last “GH” went away? But no! 

Wasting toner! Destroying forests! 

We keep throwing around these useless 

Ghost (see, there’s another one!) letters. 

The walking dead! Kil them. Kil them now! 

In fact, some of our letters are pretty 

Freaking useless all the way around. 

Take the letter “C”. No, really, PLEASE take it! 

We use “C” to make the “cuh” and the “sss” sound. 

Now, can you tell me what other letters 

Can make the sounds “cuh” and “sss”… that’s right… 


The letter “C” is just wasted space in 

The alphabet, and it steals the jobs 

Of “K” and “S,” who must also think 

This is pretty stupid. Think about it. 

We could turn “coccyx” into “koksyx” 

In the blink of an eye (or an I – those

Stupid homophones again!). I would also 

Argue we could do totally without “F,” 

Replacing it with “PH”. Yes, I know 

That this takes two letters, but they’re already 

RIGHT THERE to be used! Why throw in another 

Letter and confuse things? We’re all pretty 

Smart. If we all just agreed to drop these, 

And do an update to autocorrect, 

We’d be all set. We should eliminate 

These pointless letters, immediately!

I feel sorry for non-English speakers 

Who are trying to learn the English 

Language. The crazy spelling rules and 

Random silent letters alone would drive 

A person nuts, and that’s before you 

Even start to think about comma rules,

Capitalization, subject-verb 

Agreement, or other technical rules. 

I’m not here to argue that we should 

Abolish English, but I definitely

Think we can simplify it. Until then, 

As we go into our next semester 

Of Honors English, we will just have to 

Obediently continue to 

Follow the rite of learning to write right!

Joshua Ward, Class of 2026