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“Dixie Darlin” beautifully, mournfully describes a man’s pain when he can do nothing to save his unborn child

by | Jun 3, 2024

By Dave Andrusko

A grateful tip of the hat to Evita Duffy of The Federalist for bringing “Dixie Darlin” to my attention. “This Country Song Shines A Rare Spotlight On The Heartbreak Abortion Causes Fathers” is the headline. “Wilder Blue’s song ‘Dixie Darlin’” is a beautiful and mournful ballad that gives a rare insight into the often-overlooked father’s perspective on abortion” is the subhead.

In fact, the song lives up to the praise she lavishes on it. Men and abortion are, unfortunately, three words not often put together and virtually never in a positive light. Which is a shame. There really are a lot of guys who don’t attempt to coerce a woman into a more-or-less unwanted abortion. But we don’t hear about them. Songs like this are a small attempt to fill that void.

The narrative for “Dixie Darlin” revolves around a woman and the man who loves her. However, she is a free spirit whose wanderlust makes a commitment out of the question. Indeed, according to Wilder Blue’s main vocalist, Zane Williams, who acts as the song’s narrator and lead singer

Dixie says that horses know her better than people do
Well I’ve known Dixie seven years and I’d have to say it’s true
Once my sweetheart, now the sweetheart of the rodeo
She heard the
highwaycallin’ with themeltin’ of the snow

Early on he sings a pre-chorus refrain repeated in the lyrics:

 I tried…
Yes, I tried… to change her mind

When her dad died, Dixie came to him and “asked if I would hold her and I held her all that week.” But then she saddles up and is off again.

And then the pre-chorus

I tried…
Yes I tried… to change her mind

 

Followed by the mournful chorus

Dixie darlin’, did you find what you were after
A greener pasture
A wilder blue…
When I think about the things that really matter
I always wish that I had mattered more to you

Then Dixie calls him to inform him she is “two weeks late and she knew it must be mine.”  His response is

I wanted to raise a family, right here in this little town
But In the end she wasn’t ready to have a kid and settle down.

The ballad ends once again with the pre-chorus

I tried…
Yes I tried… to change her mind

Followed by the chorus

Dixie Darlin’, did you find what you were after
A greener pasture
A wilder blue…
When I think about the things that really matter
I always wish that I had mattered more to you

Evita Duffy writes, “There’s a sense of hopelessness in the upbeat nature of the song’s chorus. Dixie’s lover, like many other fathers, was completely powerless in his partner’s decision to kill their child. All he could do was helplessly sing that he hopes Dixie finds what she’s been after.”

For surely, he didn’t.