Flowing Streams

My name is Ann Druyan and I come from the planet called Earth. If you are listening to this, then we have made contact with you. You have intercepted Voyager and now you are deciphering the Golden Record that we have put inside what we call a time capsule. Today it is June 3, 1977. I am a twenty-seven-year-old female human and I am to be your guide. Though I have been a part of this project since its inception, I’m not sure why they chose me except that Carl insisted. He’s said so often, “I love Annie’s brain.” It is true that my mind is still young and fresh. Impressionable. Fluid. For whatever the reason, I am honored.

This project has only one purpose and that is to find you. I have been empowered to tell you about who we are and where we come from. What we are made of. And what makes us who we are. Perhaps you already know that we exist, but if you do not, you will know us now. On this recording you will find things about Earth and the people who inhabit it. You will hear music and see art and photographs, assuming you are capable of sensory perceptions. But this part of the recording is unique. Because I am not recording my words. I am not speaking, which is how most humans communicate. What you are deciphering are my thoughts.

Right now as this is being recorded I am lying on a bed in what resembles a hospital. I cannot help but wish that this were another bed. Carl’s bed. But that will happen soon enough and I shouldn’t be thinking about that now. No, that is not where my thoughts are intended to go, and perhaps if we had done this recording two days ago I would not be thinking these thoughts. Because they weren’t in my mind. Not my conscious mind, anyway. I didn’t know what I felt until Carl returned my phone call, and now it seems as if I can think of nothing else. But I cannot share this with the scientists who are recording my brain waves, and I shouldn’t even be sharing it with you. It is this enormous secret that fills every inch of my being. I have no idea where this will take me as I lie in this room. And I have no idea where life will take me after I leave.

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