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The Greatest Show on Earth Songtext
von Nightwish

The Greatest Show on Earth Songtext

1.) Four Point Six

Archaean horizon
The first sunrise
On a pristine Gaea
Opus perfectum
Somewhere there, us sleeping

After sleeping through a hundred million centuries
We have finally opened our eyes on a sumptuous planet
Sparkling with color, bountiful with life
Within decades we must close our eyes again
Isn't it a noble
An enlightened way of spending our brief time in the sun
To work on understanding the universe
And how we have come to wake up in it?

2.) Life

The cosmic law of gravity
Pulled the newborns around a fire
A careless, cold infinity in every vast direction


Lonely farer in the Goldilocks zone
She has a tale to tell
From the stellar nursery into a carbon feast
Enter LUCA

The tapestry of chemistry
There's a writing in the garden
Leading us to the Mother of all

We are one
We are a universe
Forbears of what will be
Scions of the Devonian sea

Aeons pass
Writing the tale of us all
A day-to-day new opening
For the greatest show on Earth

Ion channels welcoming the outside world
To the stuff of stars
Bedding the tree of a biological holy
Enter life

The tapestry of chemistry
There's a writing in the garden
Leading us to the Mother of all


We are one
We are a universe
Forbears of what will be
Scions of the Devonian sea

Aeons pass
Writing the tale of us all
A day-to-day new opening
For the greatest show on Earth

We are here to care for the garden
The wonder of birth
Of every form most beautiful
Every form most beautiful

We are one
We are a universe
Forbears of what will be
Scions of the Devonian sea

Aeons pass
Writing the tale of us all
A day-to-day new opening
For the greatest show on Earth

3.) The Toolmaker

After a billion years
The show is still here
Not a single one of your fathers died young
The handy travelers
Out of Africa
Little Lucy of the Afar

Gave birth to fantasy
To idolatry
To self-destructive weaponry
Enter the god of gaps
Deep within the past
Atavistic dread of the hunted

Enter Ionia, the cradle of thought
The architecture of understanding
The human lust to feel so exceptional
To rule the Earth

Hunger for shiny rocks
For giant mushroom clouds
The will to do just as you'd be done by
Enter history, the grand finale
Enter Ratkind

Man, he took his time in the sun
Had a dream to understand
A single grain of sand
He gave birth to poetry
But one day'll cease to be
Greet the last light of the library

Man, he took his time in the sun
Had a dream to understand
A single grain of sand
He gave birth to poetry
But one day'll cease to be
Greet the last light of the library

Man, he took his time in the sun
Had a dream to understand
A single grain of sand
He gave birth to poetry
But one day'll cease to be
Greet the last light of the library

We were here!
We were here!
We were here!
We were here!

4.) The Understanding

We are going to die, and that makes us the lucky ones
Most people are never going to die
Because they are never going to be born
The potential people who could have been here in my place
But who will in fact never see the light of day
Outnumber the sand grains of Sahara
Certainly those unborn ghosts include
Greater poets than Keats
Scientists greater than Newton
We know this
Because the set of possible people allowed by our DNA
So massively exceeds the set of actual people
In the teeth of these stupefying odds
It is you and I, in our ordinariness, that are here
We privileged few
Who won the lottery of birth against all odds
How dare we whine at our inevitable return
To that prior state from which the vast majority have never stirred?

5.) Sea-Worn Driftwood

There is grandeur in this view of life
With its several powers
Having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one
And that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on
According to the fixed law of gravity
From so simple a beginning
Endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been
And are being, evolved

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