"If I Wrote You" as written by and Dar Williams....
I never thought you were the letter writing type
So now I see the words you chose the way you write
So I started to write back about the trees in the snow
And I saw a bird, couldn't see what it was but I thought you'd know
You always surprised me

And if I wrote You
If I wrote You
You would know me
And you would not write me again

And when the spring came and flooded all the streams
It's like how you got the night you told me all your dreams
And when the barn roof sagged after an icy bout
It's like how you got when you knew the truth was the only way out
But not the only way

And if I wrote you
If I wrote you
You would know me
And you would not write me again

We drew our arms around the bastard sons
We never would drink to the chosen ones
Well you know the way I left was not the way I planned
But I thought the world needed love and a steady hand
So I'm steady now

And I'm so happy
I had to tell you
And I love you
And you will not write me again
You will not write me again
You will not write me again

Lyrics submitted by aur0ra

"If I Wrote You" as written by Dar Williams


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If I Wrote You song meanings
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  • +1
    General CommentThis song reminds me of a wonderful friend I had in my home town. When I moved away, I didn't write to him because I didn't think he would write back(I foolishly believed he would always be around). I was also sort of afraid he wouldn't write me back. This song moves me to tears because he died at the age of 20. There are still things I tell him, but now I talk to his headstone.
    Shining_Peaceon May 10, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe friends in the song drifted apart. Now one of them wants to reconnect because there's so much she wants to tell him, but she can't open up to him because she'd afraid of what he would think of the truth if she told him. She's afraid he'll reject her, so she says nothing.
    VampedVixenon November 06, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI feel like there is more to this than fear of rejection because of the finality of the line "and you will not write me again." I sorta feel like he said that he loved her and she didn't at the time, and had to leave, adn now that she was ready for this, he had moved past it, and he would not write her again. Just a random though.
    gretchenchuppon December 27, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Commentan interview with dar

    In the publicity material for this song [If I Wrote You] you said that there is the insinuation that the narrator is clean and sober now. On the album I see that it is dedicated to the memory of Townes Van Zandt.
    It goes either way, but it doesn't work completely for being about Townes Van Zandt. In a sense, he could be the narrator deceiving someone, he was a notorious alcoholic, but beloved. One of the things that the narrator is saying is that we have had a destructive relationship and I had to get away, but another thing the narrator is saying is that you are a completely worth it, wonderful human being. I feel like the narrator is saying, "I'm not going to judge you but I had to get away."

    I have been wondering about the lines, "The truth was the only way out,/ But not the only way."
    That was a line I wrote after I realized that it was an autobiographical song. I didn't think it was, I was just trying to flesh out a certain narrator, and then I realized who it was about. I think that these two people knew that there was only one way to go if they were going to be successful. I watched them get that glint of recognition of which way they should go. I watched that recognition and then I saw a secondary understanding, that given that was the way you should go, you could go a number of other ways and get away with it. It was really helpful to suddenly have a reference point and to be going off a live model instead of an abstract.
    pnkseashelon January 16, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe first time she says "you will not write me again,' I hear sadness and loss. Then for the second time I hear it as angry and authoritative . By the 3rd time and last time it sounds like acceptance. I feel like she is going through the stages of grief.
    Caffeinespikeon August 20, 2015   Link

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