Band leader Tanya Donnely, who had played with her stepsister Kristin Hersh in Throwing Muses (the short-lived Rhode Island invasion of the '90s) and in The Breeders, was quoted in The Illinois Entertainer
as saying this song was about commitment and respect. The metaphor is the tree that would be planted on large farms as a point of reference to getting around (the only tree sometimes). Because nothing would grow under the large tree, the family would be buried under it. Hence: "Take your hat off, boy when you're talking to me and be there when I feed the tree."
Wolf - valparaiso, IN