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The Pixies - Dig for Fire - Lyrics Meaning

This song appeared on The Pixies 1990 album Bossanova. The lead singer Black Francis has stated that it is a tribute to the Talking Heads. The song is about searching for what drives you in life. In both verses we meet an old woman and an old man. They are described as old to denote wisdom and experience. The singer sees the old woman digging and asks her if she is "looking for the mother lode", which he envisions as gold, riches or wealth in some form. She replies that she is "digging for fire". Fire in this context symbolizes a burning desire or passion for something, and the old woman is trying to find her passion. Literally digging for fire would be very difficult, which is to say that searching for your true passion in life is also not any easy task.

The second verse describes an old man on the beach, presumably living a life that the singer covets. He is also searching for something on the beach, possibly with a metal detector. Francis also asks this old man if he is searching for wealth and riches, to which he replies, "no my child, this is not my desire" and that he is also digging for life's passion, that rare and nearly unattainable thing in life that drives you along and brings you true happiness. The song is a testament to the worth of intangible emotions and well being as opposed to material possessions.

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