"A Small Plot of Land" as written by and Eno David Bowie....
Poor soul
Spit upon that
Poor soul
He never knew what hit him
And it hit him so

Poor dunce
He pushed back the pigmen
The Barbs laughed
The fool is dead

Poor dunce
He's less than within us
The brains talk
But the will to live is dead
And prayer can't travel so far these days
The talk of your life
Standing so near
To innocent eyes
Poor dunce

Swings through the tunnels
And claws his way
Is small life so manic
Are these really the days

Poor dunce
Poor dunce

Poor soul
Poor soul
Poor soul

Lyrics submitted by saturnine

"A Small Plot of Land" as written by David Bowie Brian Peter George Eno

Lyrics © Peermusic Publishing

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A Small Plot of Land song meanings
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  • 0
    General Commentthis is about dead man and his grave, small plot of land is all that belongs to him after his death
    dpakohaon January 22, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAround this period, this album in particular, he dealt with
    the topic of insanity; the "small plot of land" is probably referring to a padded room with the allusion to a dead man in a grave being calculated. "But the will to live is dead" would imply the character is still alive. "He's less than with us" weighs in favor of the insane man interpretation. I think it's really his and the conflicting "family reaction" to his brother being insane. "The fool is dead" if tied to the tarot concept would imply that the ability for new beginnings is no longer available to this person's mind and they are stuck in their perpetual hallucinations. Extremely touching song.
    liplexon September 29, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commentan alternate "strings-only" version of this song appears on the soundtrack to the film Basquiat (in which Bowie also portrayed Andy Warhol)
    laurelinwyntreon October 10, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI'm pretty sure this song is about Basquiat himself. All of your interpretations seem to be right, but due to the fact the basquiat died of a heroin overdose at age 27 and was probably pittied much, even though he was an amazing neo classic artist, small plot of land makes perfect sense now. More specifically, it's most likely about basquiat being in a small plot of land shooting up the herion and booom....suicide! and while this is happening, he is in a room like some guy said earlier. Then again it does sound very much like bowie could be talking about his crazy brother. eh I think both interpretations are coinciding; were meant to be coinciding.
    Rayquestoon July 27, 2011   Link

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