much more




When my sister was in high school, somewhere in the sixties, she went to the off-broadway production of The Fantasticks and came home with their album. We listened to it, danced to it, sang with it, for hours, days, weeks. My favorite piece was, and still is, Much More, one of the lesser known songs, which I have tried to play on the piano for thirty years unsuccessfully. I have always thought that the lyrics are simple and brilliant, and interestingly, related to the excerpt from Paulo Coelho, posted 5/12. If you are not familiar with the play, it shows up a lot at summer theaters–go.

The italicized paragraph is presented in the play as spoken word, and while I’m not sure if it is technically part of the song, I have never seen it performed without this preamble and therefore am including it here. Thank you, Tom Jones, lyricist and genius.




I’m sixteen years old and everyday something happens to me, oh, oh, oooooh!

I hug myself till my arms turn blue, and then I close my eyes

and I cry and cry till the tears come down and I can taste them.

I love to taste my tears. I am special. I am special.

Please, God, please, don’t let me be normal!


(It was at this point that you could hear my mother mocking us from the kitchen, “I am special, I am special.”)

I’d like to swim in a clear blue stream
Where the water is icy cold.
Then go to town
In a golden gown,
And have my fortune told.
Just once,
Just once,
Just once before I’m old.

I’d like to be not evil,
But a little worldly wise.
To be the kind of girl designed
To be kissed upon the eyes.

I’d like to dance till two o’clock,
Or sometimes dance till dawn,
Or if the band could stand it,
Just go on and on and on
Just once,
Just once,
Before the chance is gone.

I’d like to waste a week or two
And never do a chore.
To wear my hair unfastened
So it billows to the floor.

To do the things I’ve dreamed about
But never done before.
Perhaps I’m bad, or wild, or mad,
With lots of grief in store,
But I want much more than keeping house,
Much more,
Much more,
Much more.