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What is the Fleetwood Mac song “Sara” about?

“Sara” is mainly about Stevie’s three-month affair with Mick Fleetwood during the Rumours Tour in 1977. But, like many of Stevie’s songs, “Sara” alludes to different things happening in her life, as the original version contains many unreleased verses. “It’s about myself, and what all of us in Fleetwood Mac were going through at that time. The true version of that song is 16 minutes long. It’s a saga with many verses people haven’t heard.” (Us, 1994)

“A great dark wing…”

The first half of the song is about Stevie and Mick’s romance. The following verse specifically refers to Mick:

And he was just like
A great dark w
Within the wings of a storm

I think I had met my match
He was singing
And undoing…
And undoing…
The laces…
Undoing the laces

Said Sara…you’re the poet in my heart ~

The song’s title was inspired by Stevie’s good friend Sara Fleetwood. “I used her name because I love the name so much.” (EW, 2009). Stevie confirmed in the liner notes of the Tusk reissue (2015) that the Sara referenced in the song was, indeed, Sara Fleetwood, who assisted her during the recording of the song. “My friend Sara was there when I wrote it. She kept the coffee going and kept the cassettes coming and made sure we didn’t run out of batteries, and it was a long, long night recording that demo. She was a great songwriter helper. Sara was the poet in my heart. She likes to think it was all written about her, but it really wasn’t. She’s in there, for sure, but it’s written about a lot of other things, too.”

When you build your house ~

The Eagles drummer Don Henley believed that the lyric “when you build your house, call me” was about him. “I was building my house at the time,” Don said, “and there’s a line in the song that says, ‘And when you build your house, call me.’” (GQ, 1991). Stevie confirmed Don as the inspiration for the actual lyric, telling Ryan Murphy in 1994, “That is true.”

But the lyric’s actual meaning seems to be broader. “‘When you build your house’ was about when you get your act together,” Stevie wrote in the 2015 Tusk reissue liner notes. “Then let me know, because until you get your act together, I really can’t be around you.” Stevie hinted that line could actually be about The Eagles songwriter J.D. Souther. “Mick was the “great dark wing within the wings of a storm,” but when I was going with Mick, I was hanging out with J.D. Souther and he kept saying, ‘You do know this relationship with Mick is never going to work, don’t you?’ And I said, ‘Well, when I get out of it, I’ll let you know.” And so there’s bits and pieces of him there talking to me.”

There’s a heartbeat and it never really died ~

For many years, it was rumored that Stevie had become pregnant with Don Henley’s child. “I believe, to the best of my knowledge, [that Stevie] became pregnant by me,” Don told GQ in 1991. “And she named the kid Sara, and she had an abortion – and then wrote the song of the same name to the spirit of the aborted baby.”

Stevie addressed the pregnancy and subsequent abortion in a 1994 radio interview. “He blew it on the fact that I had an abortion. He told a big magazine that… I would never have told the world that. 92 phone calls from Don and 800 apologies later, well, that story’s out now.”

In 2014, Stevie expanded on the pregnancy to Billboard. “Had I married Don and had that baby and had she been a girl, I would have named her Sara. But there was another woman in my life named Sara, who shortly after that became Mick’s wife, Sara Fleetwood” (Tannenbaum, 2014).


Tannenbaum, R. (2014, September 26). Stevie Nicks admits past pregnancy with Don Henley and more about her wild history. Billboard.



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