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How Small We Are

November 25, 2012 in South Africa, uncategorized

The grave with my name on it and featured below is of course not mine. For those that would, in love or with glee, watch me descend into the depth of the earth, please learn this song.

There might not even be a traditional funeral, but learn it anyway…

The words are attached to the photo.

How Small We Are, How Little We Know

The song is haunting and copies for purchase are very scarce.

Anyone has a copy to pass on to me for Christmas?

Click the link below to hear the Robert Goulet rendition.

How Small We Are by Robert Goulet Music

© Earl Wilson, Jr. Lyrics appear on The Autodidact Project site courtesy of the composer.

The song was published by Glamerous Music, Inc. and the sole selling agent is: Cimino Publications Incorporated, 436 Maple Ave., Westbury, L.I., N.Y. Consult ASCAP for further information.

Commercial recordings of the song discovered so far are:

Robert Goulet, Both Sides Now, 1969 (Columbia 9763);

Johnny Mann Singers, This Guy’s in Love With You, 1967 (Liberty Records LST-7587).

Josef Locke

How Small We Are How Little We Know, 7″, UK, 1969 (Decca, 12925)

The World of Josef Locke Today, CD, 2004 (Dutton Vocalion 8106).

Note: This song was featured as the closing theme to the film The Adding Machine (1969), starring Milo O’Shea and Phyllis Diller, based on the play by Elmer Rice. The song’s performers are not known to me and the film has never been released on video. (Unofficial video recordings, most likely taped off the air, exist.) It was shown on late-night television several times during the late 1970s and/or early 1980s. This is one of my all-time favorite films, though little-known. Ever since I first saw this film on television I’m been haunted by the closing song, which rounds out the satirical existential theme. For a quarter century at least I hoped to track down the origin of this song, as I never forgot the simple yet plaintive melody and the first stanza, which I have sung from time to time. The Encyclopedia of Fantastic Film and Television and screenonline credit The Adding Machine title theme to Charlie Chaplin, who was not credited in the movie itself. This title theme cannot be the closing song listed above. Other original music is credited to Mike Leander and Lambert Williamson.

Thanks to Uncle Phaedrus and his readers, the song’s lyrics and origins were pinpointed, and recently contact with composer Earl Wilson, Jr. was made. My blog report of 24 August 2006 is superseded by this web page.

For more of Earl Wilson, Jr.’s work, see ewilson’s blog | Podcastnow Productions.

As of 5 November 2010, one recording of this song can be found on YouTube:”How Small We Are, How Little We Know” performed by Neil Reid.

Bot River- the graveyard

Famlies have moved or died out and graves have fallen to ruin. There are many new graves. Yesterday we added one more.

The plantation of pines have been harvested and the veldt is taking on a new look.

You can still stand here in the valley though and cast your eyes up to the mountain…

4 responses to How Small We Are

  1. Me also cannot find any copy on the web to download. Not even Itunes. Also go in my heart and squeez it, painfull. This is my funeral song also. My lovely perfect wife passed at 54– The world will never be the same again!! Thanks for post
    Boertjie in exile

    • Hello Boertjie:) Glad you stopped by.
      I am sorry that you lost ypur wife.
      Please feel free to visit and comment or chat a bit.
      You can listen to the song here:
      For more of Earl Wilson, Jr.’s work, see ewilson’s blog | Podcastnow Productions.

      As of 5 November 2010, one recording of this song can be found on YouTube:”How Small We Are, How Little We Know” performed by Neil Reid.

      The links are in my post. Just hover your mouse on the blog words and you will see that they are active links.

  2. Thanks Jeanius for the links been a wile from last chat, the song haunt me, stay in my head. Thanks also for your kindness. See that the song is available on vinyl, will get me a copy. Found new love, will start a new chapter. Wish you all the happiness also.

    • :) When love was good it becomes easy to accept love again. I wish you and your new love every happiness.
      Do visit again:)

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