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The Great Unknown

This song is by Dar Williams and appears on the album The Honesty Room (1993).

Once upon a time there was a nuclear family,
And we lived in a family time,
And we'd unite in a family way.
And off in the ancient mountain,
They were splitting every nucleus.
But they said, "Don't be alarmed,
They said just don't try this at home."
And they were the mystery that made the world run
And we had the power, 'cause they were the sun
And we called them our heroes, and the future had come.
They said, "Look at the light we're giving you,
And the darkness that we're saving you from."

Soon they were bringing it into our showrooms,
And they'd unveil it with its title,
Bring your family, bring your family,
It's the great unknown.
You can look, but you can't fathom,
It's the Great Unknown.

I'm no ordinary princess,
I was born in the Cold War,
And my team is the Rockets,
Go team, it's a dangerous time
And I dream of the moon and building lunar clone colonies.
And I build my peace through strength,
That's the best weapon you've got.
Oh, I am the brainchild, I am the mortar,
With a plastic trophy and an eating disorder,
And a vision as big as a great big wall,
And they tell me that I'll move forward
For the good of us all,
And the good of nuclear families all.

And they think I think I am important.
I know I never was, I wasn't.
No, I never, and how could I be?
It's the great unknown.
Now we've built it, now it's ticking,
It's the great unknown.

And I am your children, and I am millions
And I wanted to sell out, I wanted to try,
But you know that the sky got too low
And the ocean got too high.
And I, and I had to take God into my own hands
Am I too late? Is it over?
Have I sacrificed my family to the great unknown?
There's a war between my conscience and the great unknown.

So I walked out into the gamma fields
Out in Mercury, Nevada.
Where I stood in circle,
And that circle started to pray.
And now the wind at the nuclear test sites
Floats the data of the radiation.
From the underground testing,
Cross the line, you'll get arrested.
And we came from all over in a silent appeal
As the drill comes down like a presidential seal.
And we stand for the living, and we stand for the dead,
And we looked out to see your enemies,
And we see that you're looking all at us instead.

And you think I am being disruptive
But no I am running home, I'm running.
Because I'm trying to put the atom back together,
It's the great unknown.
I'm just trying to put the atom back together,
It's the great unknown.

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