"The Memory Ward."
By Wendy Nikel (?-?).
Illustration by JACEY.
First appearance: Nature/Futures, 9 June 2016.
Short short short story (1 page).
Online at Nature.com (HERE).
"That’s the difference between us. You put stuff in there to remember it; I put stuff in there to forget it."
Liza would readily understand what the poet meant when she wrote about how "last year’s bitter loving must remain heaped on my heart, and my old thoughts abide. And so stand stricken, so remembering him." For Liza, however, "remembering him" will always carry with it a bitter memory of death . . . unless—"The glimmer of a Cube caught her eye. She gripped the knife, the answer now crystal clear . . ."
- Wendy Nikel has a respectable story listing to her credit; see the ISFDb (HERE) and FictionMags (HERE).
- Editing memories, which seems to be just around the corner in neuroscience research, doesn't have to be a threat; see the Scientific American article (HERE). Of course, if you can control people's memories (see "Memory" in Wikipedia HERE) you're basically controlling them, and that can be dangerous; see Wikipedia's articles on "Mind control in popular culture" (HERE), "Drug-induced amnesia" (HERE), and "Mindwipe" (HERE). Who knows? Maybe neuralyzers already exist (HERE).