A mother living below the poverty line because of the environment that she was forced to live in, wants to go anywhere else, which she thinks would be better than where she's at. Problem is, people who live below the poverty line are a part of the vicious circle. Low paying, menial jobs foster apathy, alcoholism, crime in most who are a part of her world that she comes to find out about. She thinks that love is the answer to her problems, seeing that there is that chance at a different life.
Eventually, her partner is a part of the "vicious circle", has no real ambition or cannot get the breaks and turns to other diversions that commonly cause strife within a domestic situation.
The song leaves with a hint of despair. The "Fast Car" that was supposed to come to bring her to a better place is now a symbol of escape for the "love" she thought she had to leave her in her place to get on with her life... Unfortunately, this last message seems to portend to the poor's plight in general.
A dark, disturbing, yet beautiful and bluesy song. Hearkens back to the old days of the "blues man"(apologies to Tracy) sitting and playing the guitar and rapping about the troubles in life.