At midnight on Oct. 21, Taylor Swift released her 10th studio album, Midnights. The album consists of “the stories of 13 sleepless nights scattered throughout my life,” according to Taylor Swift herself. When she announced the album back in August, Swifties all over the world began flooding social media with their excitement. Will she reference her relationship with Harry Styles again? Will we get a diss track against Kanye West and Scooter Braun? 


Now that the album is out, fans are free to dissect all of the lyrics and make speculations about what/who each song is about. Not everyone has the time or patience to analyze the 13 sleepless nights, though. Luckily, we’ve got you covered. Here we go…


Lavender Haze – The first track of the album is perhaps the most transparent. It’s about how Swift and her boyfriend of six years, Joe Alwyn, ignore all of the rumors and scrutiny from strangers on the internet for the sole purpose of letting their relationship thrive. And as for the phrase “lavender haze” – a common phrase from the 1950’s that describes being in love – Swift says she came across it while watching Mad Men.

“I find it dizzying / They’re bringing up my history / But you weren’t even listening”


Taylor Swift Joe Alwyn Midnights


Maroon – Swift sings about a short-lived relationship in the second track of the album. But who’s it about? Considering maroon is a darker shade of red, and Swift’s Red album covered much of her relationship with Jake Gyllenhaal, it’s probably fair to speculate this song is also in reference to that relationship. However, some fans believe the song to be about her time with Harry Styles or Tom Hiddleston.

“We were shaking, blind and hazy / How the hell did we lose sight of us again?”


Anti-Hero – Track three delves into Swift’s insecurities more than any other song she’s written. She mentions depression, the fear of being left alone, narcissism disguised as altruism and more, all while describing herself as the problem. 

“I’ll stare directly at the sun / But never in the mirror / It must be exhausting rooting for the anti-hero


Snow On The Beach – Featuring Lana Del Rey, the song expresses the feeling of loving someone and realizing they love you back just as much. It simultaneously feels weird and beautiful, like snow on the beach. That’s great and everything… but why is Lana Del Rey barely in the song? If you didn’t know she was featured in the song, you might not even notice her.

“Now I’m all for you like Janet / Can this be a real thing? Can it?”


You’re On Your Own, Kid – This one is pretty brutal. It’s a tale of navigating love and fame. In both cases, she takes a misguided approach to achieving them and still ends up feeling alone. The singer also references the eating disorder she spoke about in her Netflix documentary, Miss Americana.

“I hosted parties and starved my body / Like I’d be saved by a perfect kiss”



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Midnight Rain – Track six is all about choosing your career over your relationship. Swift couldn’t chase fame if her significant other was ready to settle down. The song also gives the impression that this person was too much of a nice guy. For that reason, fans are speculating the song to be about Taylor Lautner. That theory does seem to be the most accurate one, considering the song title is quite similar to the name of Stephenie Meyer’s book, Midnight Sun, the companion novel to Twilight that is written from Edward’s point of view.

“He wanted it comfortable, I wanted that pain / He wanted a bride, I was making my own name”


Question…? – In this one, Swift sings of a relationship that she still has questions about. Some fans seem to think the song is about Karlie Kloss, who Swift allegedly kissed in a crowded room as the song says. However, this song samples “Out of the Woods,” which has been widely speculated to be about Harry Styles.

“Half-moon eyes, bad surprise / Did you realize out of time?”


Vigilante Sh*t – Swift’s bad-girl persona from Reputation makes its appearance again in this one. It’s about being wronged by a man, getting revenge and looking good while doing so. Most Swifties agree this song is about Scooter Braun, who Swift had a very public feud with. If that theory is true, it appears Swift may have befriended Scooter’s ex-wife and even helped her obtain evidence that he was cheating while they were still married.

“Now she gets the house, gets the kids, gets the pride / Picture me thick as thieves with your ex-wife”


Bejeweled – Track nine is about being in a relationship and feeling used. But in the end, she still manages to find her light. Some Swifties believe this one to be about her past relationship with Calvin Harris.

“When I walk in the room / I can still make the whole place shimmer”


Labyrinth – Swift appears to have anxiety about falling in love and being pleasantly surprised when the relationship works out. It doesn’t take much analysis to draw the conclusion that this one is about Joe Alwyn.

“I thought the plane was going down / How’d you turn it right around?”


Karma – Swift explained this track herself, saying it came from a place of being really proud of the way her life is and feeling like it must be a reward for doing things right. However, with phrases like “addicted to betrayal” and “trick me once, trick me twice,” Swifties believe the song is also a jab at Kanye West. We all remember how West stole her thunder at the MTV VMA’s in 2009. The two eventually made amends, only for West to betray Swift once again by referencing her inappropriately in a song and telling the world she agreed to it when she hadn’t.

“Karma’s a relaxing thought / Aren’t you envious that for you it’s not?”


Taylor Swift Kanye West MTV VMAs Midnights


Sweet Nothing – Swift collaborated with Alwyn in writing the 12th track on the album. Of course, you won’t see his name in the song credits because he writes under his pseudonym, William Bowery. The song explores the feeling of being with someone who feels like home.

“You’re in the kitchen humming / All that you ever wanted from me was sweet nothing” 


Mastermind – Swift has been painted as somewhat of a master manipulator by critics for years. This song is about Swift taking a little bit of ownership of that narrative, but mostly with her current relationship. Basically, she put in the work to snag Joe Alwyn. 

“What if I told you I’m a mastermind? / And now you’re mine”


Although we believe we have these 13 tracks all figured out, art is usually left up to the interpretation of the receiver. We know there are lots of Arkansas Swifties out there who can bring diverse points of view to the table. It’s one of the best things about being a part of her fandom – we can all unite to discuss her little Easter eggs. So we’ve gotta ask… Do you agree with our analysis of each song? Do you have a different theory that we didn’t cover? Let us know!


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