Words Forbidden

I am going to take a note from Cranky and attempt one of these daily prompt dohickies as a story.

Daily Prompt: Never

“Reading for pleasure is strictly forbidden, all citizens are restricted to only texts containing news and information pertaining to your assigned occupational designation.”

The words were printed in large bold red letters on the walls of the public library, which the last several decades had only contained government-approved non-fictional titles. Everything was now controlled by your ID card, where you were permitted to live, what job you were assigned to, what class you were permitted to marry into, and even what out of the vast troves of books within the library’s collection you were permitted to read.

Stories were now only told in hushed whispers, behind closed doors and in secret, much in the tradition of our ancient ancestors, before the age of written language. The few unapproved books that had survived the purge, were considered more precious than gold, and kept hidden away, or were in the hands of only the most wealthy, who were still as a privilege of their class permitted access. Were anyone of a lower class caught with even a few written pages, they would surely vanish, most never to be heard from again. The government knew well the power of words, words lead to ideas, and nothing was more dangerous than an underclass capable of thinking for themselves.

There are universes of stories in my head that will never be put to paper, but only heard by the few dear enough to me to listen. They are stories not only of my own, but of a time long ago, before the words were forbidden. I am young enough to still want to live, but too old to care if they come for me now. Someone must remember, someone must pass these stories on, before they are all but lost forever.

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6 thoughts on “Words Forbidden

  1. Dang, dang, dang and dang. Thanks, Aurora for this awesome piece of text. Not only did you told us a tale of a future where written words are restricted, but also you made us feel the desperation of not having the opportunity to read each other’s ideas and stories.

    Perfect post.

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