Taylor’s Top Lyrics

Taylors Top Lyrics

Mariella Haubner and Amani Yousuf

Taylor Swift is one of the most influential lyrical geniuses of our time. She has released nine studio albums, three live albums, four extended plays, and two re-recorded albums. In honor of her new album Midnights dropping Friday, Oct. 21, here are some of her best lyrics of all time.

1.“How can a person know everything at 18/ But nothing at 22?/ And will you still want me/ When I’m nothing new?” – “Nothing New (Taylor’s Version) (From The Vault) [feat. Phoebe Bridgers]”

In a collab with the phenomenal Phoebe Bridgers, Nothing New tells the story of age 22 Taylor Swift in a new light. When Red came out, Taylor tried to tell the world that she was okay, specifically “Everything will be alright if/We just keep dancing like we’re/22.” In reality, she was really going through it and the parallels between Nothing New and 22 reflect how a person can appear to have it all together, but on the inside, wonder if they matter after life leaves them feeling repeatedly ‘beaten and bruised.’

2. “And I can go anywhere I want/ Anywhere I want/ Just not home” – “my tears ricochet”

Being caught in a toxic relationship can make it very hard to leave. Sometimes, people feel like their “home” has been diminished. Having to escape from something so comfortable can be a reason many don’t leave. Taylor left and saved herself but she still feels a part of her missing. This song touched so many listeners with something that others can really relate to. This has to be in our personal top three.

3. “You drew stars around my scars/ But now I’m bleeding” – “cardigan”

Cardigan is a fan favorite and part of Taylor’s ‘folklore love triangle’-alongside betty and augustRumored to be sung from Betty’s perspective (betty is named after her), cardigan is about a lost teenage romance and its impact on someone’s life-even years later. This lyric has resonated with so many because it talks about finding a safe place with someone, but in their absence you feel lost. This lyric is so powerful because it makes listeners feel seen, whether or not they have experience with being abandoned by someone they love. Our theory is that James (the character telling the story in betty) was that person for Betty, he made her feel safe but after he left, he left her “bleeding.”

4. “I once believed love would be (Burning red)/ But it’s golden/Like daylight” – “Daylight”

This song is so special because it really lets Taylor shine, but it’s also clear how she finally found ‘her person.’ The parallels from former lover Jake Gyllenhaal to current boyfriend Joe Alwyn stand out in this line specifically. Jake and Taylor’s age gap was nine years–he also treated her terribly and while their relationship was certainly passionate, it reminded her of a ‘burning red love’–while Joe is the man she’s always wished for and with him she’s found this ‘golden love’ that resembles sunshine and light. 

5. “Don’t call me kid/Don’t call me baby/Look at this idiotic fool that you made me/You taught me a secret language I can’t speak with anyone else/And you know damn well/For you I would ruin myself/…a million little times” – “illicit affairs

Being a secret can’t ever be easy. But when you get continuously caught in a pattern you cannot escape, someone is ultimately going to get attached. Taylor emphasizes this idea when she says “for you I would ruin myself a million little times” because for her, she wants more, she craves more, but for him she is merely someone to fill time with. This entire song is the definition of pain.

6. “l bet you either think I moved on or hate you/ ’Cause each time you each out, there’s no reply/I bet it never, ever occurred to you/ That I can’t say hello to you and risk another goodbye” – “I Almost Do (Taylor’s Version)”

Yet again, another relatable line for listeners. Singing about still being in love with someone post breakup. The constant wondering about them, the internal debate you have with yourself as to whether or not you should call. When she says “I can’t risk another goodbye,” this may be alluding to the idea that she knows it wouldn’t ever work out again, ultimately causing her to have to leave again.

7. “So this me swallowing my pride/ Standing in front of you saying, “I’m sorry for that night”/ And I go back to December all the time” – “Back to December”

One of the few songs where Taylor recognizes her faults in a relationship. This is the quintessential “apology song” and it’s so genuine. Fans speculate that this song is about Taylor Lautner and connects with so many listeners because whether or not they’re looking back on a relationship, everyone has experienced regret.

8. “And you call me up again/ Just to break me like a promise/ So casually cruel in the name of being honest” – “All Too Well (Taylor’s Version)/All Too Well (10 Minute Version) (Taylor’s Version) (From The Vault)”

First off, if you haven’t watched the All Too Well short film, stop what you’re doing right now, and watch it. Jake Gyllenhaal and Taylor’s relationship may have been the worst one of all time- meaning there were amazing songs written about it. This entire song is quite literally a movie. Walking us through the innocence of new love, to when the manipulation, gaslighting, and mental abuse kicked in. This left her wondering what she did, while Jake continues to reach out after leaving her knowing what he’s doing. 

9. “Cross legged in the dim light/ Everything was just right, I/ I could feel the mascara run/ You told me that you met someone/ Glass shattered on the white cloth/ Everybody moved on” – “right where you left me”

The vast imagery Taylor continuously uses really makes us feel like we’re living through the song with her. She puts us at the scene where her heart was broken, once more. “Everybody moved on,” yet she’s still there, she cannot move past the pain that she was put through.

10. “People like you always want back/ The love they gave away/ And people like me wanna believe you/ When you say you’ve changed” – “All You Had To Do Was Stay”

This song is simply about showing up for the person you love. Why is it so hard? There are many theories as to who this song is about, however, its main message is about the temptations of wanting to let somebody back into your life after they’ve failed you.

11. “He opens up my door and I get into his car/ And he says you look beautiful tonight/ And I feel perfectly fine/ But I miss screaming and fighting and kissing in the rain/ And it’s 2 am and I’m cursing your name/ So in love that you act insane/ And that’s the way I loved you” –
“The Way I Loved You (Taylor’s Version)” 

This song is about being in love with someone horrible for you, while trying to date someone who is much better. She feels nothing for this new “ideal” man but she’s too used to the constant pain of fighting, screaming, and pure chaos of toxicity. 10/10 recommend. Beautiful song. 

12. “My heart, my hips, my body, my love/ Tryna find a part of me that you didn’t touch” – “Death By A Thousand Cuts”

The bridge of this song is criminally underrated. The phenomenon of feeling the presence of the person you love in every bone of your body, long after they’re gone, resembles ‘death by a thousand cuts’ because like heartbreak, it’s very excruciating.