Everyone wants to find that rare, unique love that's "sweet as cherry wine" but before you indulge yourself in a relationship, make sure you look deeper into the other person and how they behave around you rather than just a taste of their personality. Andrew Hozier-Byrne had written the song "Cherry Wine" to use his fame to speak out about the effects of domestic violence in today's society. He paired up with #FaceUpToDomesticViolence campaign who gave him over 20 organizations that protect domestic abuse victims that he donated all proceeds off of this single. After finding out the statistics of one in three women and one in four men being victims, Hozier decided to take a stand that is somewhat obvious but has a much deeper meaning when analyzed.
If you have not seen the video, watch it here:
This song is written in the perspective of a man being abused by a woman, the video is in the perspective of a woman being abused by a man. It shows an apparently loving relationship full of smiles and affection until the woman takes off her makeup before bed and reveals a black eye which her lover then kisses.
Even if you have not seen the video, the lyrics are bound to pull at your heart strings. Hozier speaks about how his mother expresses her concern about him being in a bad relationship but he refuses to acknowledge it. He speaks of the ice in her words and how her anger burns like "rum on a fire". The next thing he goes on to speak about is how "her fight and fury is fiery, oh but she loves like sleep to the freezing" alluding to the initial abuse burning but eventually you don't end up feeling the pain.
The most powerful lyricism expressed in this song by far is the chorus where he justifies the abuse because he has never had a love so sweet and how he's lucky to have her anyways. The chorus goes, "It looks ugly, but it's clean. Oh momma don't fuss over me. Calls of guilty thrown at me, I'm all but washed in the tides of her breathing. But I want it, it's a crime... open hand or closed fist would be fine. The blood is rare and sweet as cherry wine." If you take a look into the meaning behind the lyrics as experiences rather than just words, you get into the mind of an abuse victim. They know that the wounds are there and unappealing but they think that they can handle themselves without help. Though they know that they don't do anything wrong, they can't help but feel guilty or ashamed when their abuser gets angry. However, no matter what happens, they are addicted to the love they get.
Whether you or a loved one are in this situation, it is important to know that nothing is the victim's fault. There is so much more to cutting off an abusive lover than just leaving as it may not be safe. If you are in this situation or know someone that is, please call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233. If you are concerned about yourself or a loved one, you can also visit https://www.domesticshelters.org to find local resources, information, and statistics.