Happy 40th Anniversary to Voyagers 1 & 2! Almost out of the solar system, traveling faster than anything else man has ever built, soon (in an astronomical sense) you will announce our presence to the rest of the intelligent universe (if it exists).
You are our first spacecraft unable to ask, “Are we there yet?” You have no specific destination. You will continue to zip toward the constellation Ophiuchus (like a gift to make up for leaving the “Man and Serpent” off the astrological charts), but you are truly about the journey.
You carry humanity’s hopes for making first contact with other (what we call intelligent) life as our cultural ambassador. Carrying a message of welcome in many languages, as well as music and other sounds of Earth and even directions to find us.
How will you be received when you are discovered? Here’s my take on it in a Shakespearean sonnet: