I wrote this song late at night on a beach in Biloxi, MS, in June 1990. Earlier in the vacation, we'd been in Mexico Beach, FL, with friends. One of the highlights was running around with their toddler on the beach at night chasing sand crabs with a flashlight. Another was going out on a pontoon boat and feeding fish to dolphins.

picture of Barbara feeding a fish to a dolphin off the side of a party barge.

Then we went to Biloxi to visit Barbara's sister and family, and one night I took my guitar down to the Gulf. I was alone, looking at the stars, wondering about life in outer space, and life on Earth, and the chances of humans surviving, and whether the crabs and dolphins would outlast us silly humans. Are we the only things alive in this unimaginably vast universe? Seems improbable, but with such incredible distances between us, how will we ever know each other?

Of course, there are parallel themes right here on Earth.

I've had a good time playing this song at the Skunk Hollow Tavern open mic Wednesday nights, and here's a video of me playing it at the "Brownsville's Got Talent" show in June 2012.

This recording from 2007, mangobananas studios, Ithaca, NY. All sounds by me except Jon Morse on drum kit.

This is from the album refresher. There's an older version of the song from 1995 here, and an even older, simpler recording from 1991 here.

Thanks for listening!


photomosaic of the Milky Way
the only things alive

a toddler laughing chasing crabs
with a flashlight beam, we run
along the crashing whitenoise surf
that pounds my mind into a song

   baby, let's take a walk
   down to the moonlit sea
   we don't even have to talk
   let's just see what we can see
   the stars are so deep tonight
   is there life in outer space
   or are we the only things alive
   just trying to survive

drink at the sea, live in a hole
I'll use my claws if I have to
fight the bigger creatures so
I can eat the little creatures if I want to

            the sea is in everything
the sea and the sun
            the sun feeds the cycle
the sun feeds the plants
             the plants feed the animals
the plants in the earth
            the earth is an organism
the earth lives but how
            but how will this world survive
        and are we
            the only things alive?

I can see the dolphins swim
the undertow pulls my heart
reaching out into that space
we are so far apart

©1990 Andy Wyatt
music and lyrics written 24, 26, 29 June 1990