Yes, the M*A*S*H theme does have lyrics!

Lots of questions about this one… so here is the song and the lyrics – there are more lyrics than in the recorded version, but here they all are.

Interestingly, the lyrics were written by Mike Altman, son of late director Robert Altman, who directed the original motion picture M*A*S*H, that the series was based upon. Mike was only 14 years old when he wrote the lyrics. Gotta wonder what kind of childhood he had.

The theme was sung by Johnny Mandel, who wrote the music and the score for the movie.


Through early morning fog I see
visions of the things to be
the pains that are withheld for me
I realize and I can see…

(That) suicide is painless
It brings on many changes
and I can take or leave it if I please.

I try to find a way to make
all our little joys relate
without that ever-present hate
but now I know that it’s too late, and…

The game of life is hard to play
I’m gonna lose it anyway
The losing card I’ll someday lay
so this is all I have to say.

The only way to win is cheat
And lay it down before I’m beat
and to another give my seat
for that’s the only painless feat.

The sword of time will pierce our skins
It doesn’t hurt when it begins
But as it works its way on in
The pain grows stronger…watch it grin, but…

A brave man once requested me
to answer questions that are key
is it to be or not to be
and I replied ‘oh why ask me?’

‘Cause suicide is painless
it brings on many changes
and I can take or leave it if I please.
…and you can do the same thing if you please.