Whose Names I Don’t Know

Thanks to Cuzzin’ Shelley for this nice pic.

Whenever I see a window, I think of someone looking out seeing whatever they want or wish they could see.  So, I thought of a guy sitting by his window looking up at the stars through a telescope and thinking of many things — mainly answers to questions.

This story was first published on May 28, 2014.  Before we begin …

EDITOR’S NOTE: One night, a HAM radio operator named Kevin, who originally hailed from Flanders, intercepted a transmission.  It was the voice of a woman who told a tale of her and her brother being marooned for centuries. The language spoken, he told me, sounded something like a sort of “High Flemish,” if there were such a thing. “I felt very sorry for the woman transmitting,” he later told me. “She sounded so sad.” He copied it down in English, went to the library, borrowed a first edition Caldecott book, took to the radio and hoped the message he was sending would be heard.

It was!



He heard the signal from star “Ni-Etrell’s” third planet, “Gna-Jala.”

Gna-Jala —- where his lovely Koo-Brindii and her brother were lost forever, centuries ago.

The message, barely readable, sounded almost like a lower version of his own language.

“… Kevin.  Our planet … called Earth.  I intercepted her signal … seems … toward Alpha Centauri … If by … you’re reading this …  how sorry I am for … loss.  She … on Earth, immortalized in …  book.  I … read it to you … her memory.


‘My dear, do you know,

How a long time ago,

Two poor little children,

Whose names I don’t know,

Were stolen away … ‘ “


The legend of The Green Children of Woolpit served as the inspiration for this story.


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32 Responses to Whose Names I Don’t Know

  1. neilmacdon says:

    A mysterious tale, William. I hope they get back

  2. wmqcolby says:

    Unfortunately, they never did get back. This story was a sequel to a previous one. It was all message, but here’s the link and the pic if you’d like to read it.


  3. plaridel says:

    alien abduction is real. here’s my take on it: http://wp.me/p6FwZ-2IT

  4. Dale says:

    Abduction of any kind is no fun; never mind alien!
    Hey, Kent… go crazy and give us something new! Nudge that muse 😉

  5. James McEwan says:

    A sort of ScFi folk tale = me thinks

  6. pennygadd51 says:

    What an intriguing story. Mind you, science fact is getting almost as far out as that now. Have you read the latest idea that we should send an armada of microsatellites in the direction of Proxima Centauri?

    • wmqcolby says:

      No, Penny, I haven’t but it sounds cool. It’ll take probably some 40,000 years for them to get there, but it sounds fun. The one flaw in the story (or maybe not, I don’t know) is that a signal was heard from earth (probably some five years later) but the antenna would have to be immensely big to back it and also carry it on a certain frequency that would be compatible. Maybe some kind of radio frequency telescope and the same kinds of frequencies are on both planets. I was in TV and radio for many years.

  7. Iain Kelly says:

    I wonder if someone out there is picking up the messages we keep sending out into space, and if one day we will intercept a reply!

  8. Dear Kevin

    From the inhabitants of planet earth I send greetings.

    Beam me up Scotty,

    Janeway out.

  9. Tannille says:

    These sort of things tend to get lost in translation. If I heard that I’d have a WTF moment haha. Creative tale.

  10. YIKES … hubby watching Aliens … you writing about Aliens.
    I’m being haunted. If there’s an Alien out there, can they please eliminate COVID?
    Isadora 😎
    PS: I want pasta too. I haven’t had it in years. Gluten-free pasta just ain’t pasta. LOLOL

  11. ahtdoucette says:

    Ooh, interesting story. I feel like there is so much more to this one!

  12. wmqcolby says:

    There is. In fact, I tinkered with the idea of a world where these kids came from. Maybe someday — or when the muse hits saying, “WRITE IT!”

  13. Sandra says:

    Interesting story and even more interesting reference. Good one, Kent.

  14. granonine says:

    Nothing like a little sci-fi to get the imagination stirring. Well done 🙂

  15. This is out of this world!

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