LAURIE ANDERSON lyrics - Mach 20

LAURIE ANDERSON
"Mach 20"

Ladies and gentlemen, what you are observing here are magnified examples or facsimiles of human sperm.
Generation after generation of these tiny creatures have sacrificed themselves in their persistent, often futile, attempt to transport the basic male genetic code. But where is this information coming from? They have no eyes. No ears.
Yet some of them already know that they will be bald.
Over half of them will end up as women.

Four hundred million living creatures, all knowing precisely the same thing-carbon copies of each other in a Kamikaze race against the clock.
Some of you may be surprised to learn that if a sperm were the size of a salmon it would be swimming its seven-inch journey at 500 miles per hour.
If a sperm were the size of a whale, however, it would be traveling at 15,000 miles per hour, or Mach 20. Now imagine, if you will, four hundred million blind and desperate sperm whales departing from the Pacific coast of North America swimming at 15,000 mph and arriving in Japanese coastal waters in just under 45 minutes.
How would they be received?
Would they realize that they were carrying information, a message?
Would there be room for so many millions?
Would they know that they had been sent for a purpose?

United States Live (1984)