written quotes

Lost quotations

Have a look at the lost quotes below and see if you can help us out! (Please note that comments must be suitable for audiences of all ages and may be removed if not.)

"Only a tiny man you are..." | 25-Jul-05

"Only a tiny man you are, in a forest of tiny trees
Or a man on a tiny mountain top, surrounded by tiny seas
And nobody out in the stratosphere, if anyone lives so far
Would....or stop to stare
If your minature Earth so full of care
Turned into a flaming star.

Only a tiny man you are, in a tiny city dwell
With millions of other tiny men, trapped in a tiny hell

Only a tiny man you are, you and your tiny wife,
In a tiny house, in a tiny town, living your tiny life
And none who live in the larger lands beyond the Milky Way
Or turn a head at the tiny bang
Which ends your tiny day"

Possibly by A.P. Herbert 

6 comments have been made on this quote. Click here to read them and then add your own!


Do you know this poem? Do you have any clues to help us find it?


Comments:

"Only a Tiny Man You Are" was written by Nat Gubbins and published in the Sunday Express. normally a humorist, this was his sardonic comment on the first atom bomb. I think I can fill in the missing bits, if you want them.
Don McAllister

Here is the full text:-
ONLY A TINY MAN YOU ARE

Only a tiny man you are, in a forest of tiny trees,
Or a man on a tiny mountain top, surrounded by tiny seas;
And none who live in the outer sphere, if any there be so far,
Would turn a hair, or stop to stare, if your tiny world, so full of care,
Turned into a blazing star.

Only a tiny man you are, in a tiny town you dwell,
With millions of other tiny men, trapped in a tiny hell;
And none who dwell, if dwell they do, in lands beyond the sun,
Would feel a pang, or care a hang, if a tiny flash and a tiny bang
Says your tiny race is run.

Only a tiny man you are, you and your tiny wife,
In a tiny house, in a tiny town, living your tiny life;
And none who live in the larger lands beyond the Milky Way,
Would shed a tear at the flash and the smear
Which ends your tiny day.


Don McAllister

sorry! This is the corrected version of the 1945 poem by Nat Gubbins:-

ONLY A TINY MAN YOU ARE

Only a tiny man you are, in a forest of tiny trees,
Or a man on a tiny mountain top, surrounded by tiny seas;
And none who dwell, if dwell they do, in lands beyond the sun,
Would shed a tear, if a flash and a smear tells those who live in the outer sphere
That your tiny race is run.

Only a tiny man you are, you and your tiny wife,
In a tiny house, in a tiny town, living your tiny life;
And none who live in the larger lands beyond the Milky Way,
Would feel a pang, or care a hang, if a tiny flash and a tiny bang
Should end your tiny day.

Only a tiny man you are, in a tiny town you dwell,
With millions of other tiny men, trapped in a tiny hell;
And none who live in the Universe, if any there be so far,
Would turn a hair, or trouble to stare, if your tiny world, so full of care,
Turned into a blazing star.



Don McAllister

The poem was written in response to a comment by Professor Urey, the Noble prize-winning American scientist who more or less discovered heavy water in the 1930s and worked on the Manhattan Project to create the first atomic bomb. Asked if the H bomb might start a chain reaction which could destroy the earth, he replied, "Possible, but not probable. But I see no cause for alarm. After all, the earth is only a tiny planet in a vast universe."
The poem was written by Nathaniel Gubbins as Don McAllister says, and appeared in his
'Sitting on the Fence' column.
Roderick Macleod

I am loth to add yet another version. However, this one came from The Sudan Star of 20 gfebruary 1950, to which Nat (Norman) Gubbins' 'Sitting on the Fence' column was presumably syndicated.

The End

Only a tiny man you are in a forest of tiny trees;
Or a man on a tiny mountain top enclosed by tiny seas.
And nobody out in the hemisphere, if anyone lives so far,
Would turn a hair, or trouble to stare, if your miniature world so full of care
Turned into a flaming star.
[...]
Rod Macleod

I have this poem in a scapbook, undated, at the top of the first page which I started in 1950. My father took the Sunday Express at the time. I agree Rod Macleod's version except
1. World should read earth (Urey's word)
2. Poem is set out in short lines with uncapitalised lines inset, which I think more appropriate for the subject.
Bryan Govett


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