Ray Bradbury’s The Creatures That Time Forgot

I’m not a huge fan of short stories. They always leave me wanting more: a longer plot, more detail, more of a resolution. None of that ever arrives for the reader. It’s frustrating beyond belief, it’s that form of titillation is often very addictive. It’s the reason why many readers love Ray Bradbury. In The Creatures That Time Forgot, we meet the main character as a newborn with a newborn consciousness, and he is growing and learning really fast.

He stored knowledge thirstily. He understood love, marriage, customs, anger, pity, rage selfishness, shadings, and subtleties, realities and reflections. One thing suggested another.

The weeks passed. Generations lived and died in the cliffs, while the five hundred workers labored over the ship, learning its functions and its parts.

The people in this short story are living on a planet. To me, it’s unclear whether the planet is habitable or not, but it really doesn’t seem so. At least the plot seems to suggest it’s not because the people struggle to survive and are caught in an endless war. Reads like a powerful metaphor. More importantly, they live a really, really short time. This is the story of one individual on a quest to expand his life somehow using a space ship. Will it work? Read it. Nothing is lost by giving it a shot; see if you like it.

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