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Decoding Taylor Swift's 'Midnights' Album — All The Meanings Behind Her Songs, Including '3AM' Edition

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Taylor Swift

Following the release of her highly anticipated album 'Midnights', Swifites have taken to social media to break down the hidden meanings behind Taylor Swift's songs. 

The singer has once again blown fans away with her tenth album — and an additional seven tracks in the wee morning hours at 3 AM.

But as any Swiftie does, they were quick to find the hidden meanings behind the songs. 

Taylor Swift's 'Midnights' album meanings, Easter eggs and theories.

Here are just some of the track theories, in order of the tracklist on the album. 

RELATED: A Complete Breakdown Of Who Taylor Swift's Songs Are (Allegedly) About

'Lavender Haze' meaning explained:

This is less of a fan theory because it came from the mouth of the queen herself. 

When promoting the album’s release, Swift took to her Instagram to talk a little bit about some of the tracks- one being the opener titled ‘Lavender Haze.’

"I happened upon the phrase 'Lavender Haze' when I was watching Mad Men, and I looked it up because I thought it sounded cool," she told fans.

"And it turns out that it's a common phrase used in the '50s, where they would just describe being in love. If you were in the lavender haze, then that meant that you were in that all-encompassing love glow, and I thought that was really beautiful."

Swift also noted that the song focuses on trying to do everything possible to stay in that honeymoon phase of love. 

RELATED: 7 Weird Details About Taylor Swift And Joe Alwyn's Relationship

"I think a lot of people have to deal with this now, not just like 'public figures,' because we live in the era of social media. And if the world finds out that you're in love with somebody, they're gonna weigh in on it. Like my relationship for six years, we've had to dodge weird rumors, tabloid stuff, and we just ignore it. And so this song is sort of about the act of ignoring that stuff to protect the real stuff.”

'Maroon' meaning explained:

In her second track on the album, Swift describes dancing in New York as she looks up at the sky, where it’s the same shade of burgundy on her t-shirt. 

A fan on TikTok theorized the song could be about Swift’s short relationship with Harry Styles.



Their love was “so scarlet it was maroon.”

'Anti-Hero' meaning explained:

Swift opened up on her Instagram about the meaning behind this track, saying it was a journey through her insecurities. 

“I struggle a lot with the idea that my life has become unmanageably sized and that I struggle with the idea of not feeling like a person."

"This song is a guided tour throughout all the things I tend to hate about myself and it’s all of those aspects of the things we dislike about ourselves that we have to come to terms with if we’re going to be this person,” she added. 

'Snow on the Beach' meaning explained:

Swift says this song, which features Lana Del Rey is about falling in love with someone who is also falling in love with you.

"Sort of in this, sort of, cataclysmic faded moment where you realize someone feels exactly the same way that you feel at the same moment. And you’re kind of looking around going like, ‘Wait, is this real? Is this a dream? Is it… Is this real? Is this happening? Is it really happening?’" she told her Instagram followers.

RELATED: Why Taylor Swift’s ‘I Bet You Think About Me’ Music Video Is One Big Subliminal Message To Scooter Braun

Kind of like it would be if you were to see snow falling on a beach."

'You’re on Your Own, Kid' meaning explained:

One of the more serious tracks on the album, this song’s lyrics open up about Swift’s struggle with her newfound fame and her mental health, including her previous eating disorder

"From sprinkler splashes to fireplace ashes / I gave my blood, sweat and tears for this / I hosted parties and starved my body / Like I'd be saved by a perfect kiss."

'Midnight Rain' meaning explained:

Fans are theorizing that this track could be about Swift’s short-lived relationship with Tom Hiddleston.

But when listening to the lyrics, it seems to be hinting at a love long before Swift’s career took off, possibly a boy from her hometown?

"Rain/He wanted it comfortable/ I wanted that pain/ He wanted a bride/I was making my own name/Chasing that fame/He stayed the same/All of me changed/Like midnight.”

'Question...?' meaning explained:

While we're not entirely sure who this track is about, Swift is seemingly asking a past lover a string on questions involving his past flings. 

The lyrics: "Did you ever have someone kiss you in a crowded room?" sparked some theories that the track could be about Harry Styles due to this infamous New Year's Eve kiss.

'Vigilante Sh-t' meaning explained:

An ode to her ‘Reputation’ era, fans are theorizing that this track could be about Kanye West and Kim Kardashian’s divorce or Scooter Braun and Yael Caun Braun’s divorce- both of whom she’s had very public feuds with. 

Swift sings about a nemesis who went through a divorce:

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

'Bejeweled' meaning explained:

The lyrics describe a woman losing her 'sparkle' over the course of a relationship where the boy doesn't appreciate her anymore, despite her best efforts and her kindness towards him.

"Didn't notice you walking all over my peace of mind/ In the shoes I gave you as a present/ Putting someone first only works when you're in their top five."

'Labyrinth' meaning explained:

The song takes us through Swift's anxiety about falling for a new love and assuming the worst but ultimately getting an amazing relationship.

The lyrics "Breathe in, breathe through, breathe deep, breathe out"  are also a refrence to her NYU commencement speech in May. 

'Karma' meaning explained:

Many fans believe this song is about the long-standing feud between Swift and old manager Scooter Braun. 

Her lyrics seemingly allude to this. 

"Spider boy, king of thieves / Weave your little webs of opacity / My pennies made your crown / Trick me once, trick me twice / Don't you know that cash ain't the only price / It's coming back around."

'Sweet Nothing' meaning explained:

This song has fans theorizing it's a proclamation of love for Swift's long-term boyfriend Joe Alwyn, who under his pseudonym William Bowery, also helped collaborate on this album and specifically this track. 

The lyrics also seem to hint at the fact that everybody always wants something from Swift- except for Alwyn. 

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"Industry disruptors and soul deconstructors / And smooth-talking hucksters out-glad-handing each other / And the voices that implore, you should be doing more / To you I can't admit, that I'm just too soft for all of it / Ooh, ooh-ooh-ooh / They said the end is comin' / Everyone's up to something / I found myself running home to your sweet nothings / I'll take their pushin', shovin' / You're in the kitchen humming / All that you ever wanted from me was sweet nothing."

'Mastermind' meaning explained:

On this track, Swift seemingly pokes fun at the reputation she has for 'plotting' her love life. 

The song is also an ode to her love for Alwyn. 

"What if I told you none of it was accidental/ And the first night you saw me nothing was going to stop me/ I laid the groundwork and then like clockwork/ The dominoes cascade into a line/ What if I told you I'm a mastermind?"

'The Great War' meaning explained:

The first of her 3 AM seven tracks, "The Great War" compares a dark time in a relationship to World War I- but we're still unsure if this is a specific relationship or not. 

"It turned into something bigger/ Somewhere in the haze/ Got a sense I'd been betrayed/ Your finger on my hairpin triggers/ Soldier down on that icy ground/ Looked up at me with honor and truth/ Broken and blue/ So I called off the troops/ That was the night I nearly lost you/ I really thought I'd lost you."

'Bigger Than the Whole Sky' meaning explained:

One of the darker tracks on the lists, many fans are theorizing this song is talking about a miscarriage. 

In a Reddit thread discussing the album, many fans shared their thoughts on the track.

RELATED: 9 Strict Rules Taylor Swift Allegedly Makes Her Boyfriends Follow

"I think infertility in general could fit. When you’re diagnosed it can knock the wind out of you. You think you’ll just find the love of your life and have all the babies and big dreams about the house and vacations and lots of grandkids but when you’re told it’s possible that dream will never come true, you mourn the what if," one user wrote. 

'Paris' meaning explained:

Fans believe this song is about the love Swift and Alwyn share with each other and the lengths they'll go to to protect the relationship from the public eye. 

"Privacy sign on the door/ And on my page and on the whole world/ Romance is not dead/ If you keep it just yours/ Levitate above all the messes made/ Sit quiet by my side in the shade/ And not the kind that's thrown/ I mean the kind under where a tree has grown."

'High Infidelity' meaning explained:

The title itself is a play on the 2000 film ‘High Fidelity,” starring Lisa Bonet — who just so happens to be Zoe Kravitz’s mother, the lead in a remake of the film.

Kravitz also seems to have helped work on the album. She is credited as a backing vocalist on the first track of the album as well as helping co-write "Lavender Haze" and "Karma." 



Fans are also theorizing about the lyric “Do you really want to know where I was April 29th?”

Where was Swift?

Just Jared shared some of the theories, saying it could be her attending a friend’s birthday party, a fated meeting with ex Calvin Harris, or even a simple shopping trip. 

'Glitch' meaning explained:

People believe this track is another ode to Swift and Alwyn's relationship. 

"I was supposed to sweat you out / In search of glorious happenings of happenstance on someone else's playground / But it's been 2,190 days of our love blackout."

When doing the math, 2,190 divided by 365 is 6- which just so happens to be how long the two have been together.

If that wasn't enough, there happened to be a blood moon on the night the two began dating on September 16, 2016. There is also a "Blood Moon" edition of the 'Midnights' album. 

'Would've, Could've, Should've' meaning explained:

The track tells us about a regretful relationship when Swift was 19. 

Swift was linked to John Mayer and Jake Gyllenhaal at the time, both of whom were significantly older than her. 

RELATED: Jake Gyllenhaal Finally Addresses Taylor Swift’s ‘All Too Well’ & Why It Has 'Nothing To Do' With Him



Swift has also sang of the pain she went through in these relationships with past songs "Dear John" and "All Too Well."

It seems the lyrics to this track allude to the fact that she regrets these relationships.

'Dear Reader' meaning explained:

While this song isn't about anybody in particular, it seems Swift is speaking to her fans directly, warning them to, "Never take advice from someone who's falling apart."

The song could be about the fact that while Swift is a celebrity and in the public eye, she's simply a human being as well who makes her mistakes. 

Reactions to the album. 

Swift herself noted how ambitious the album was. 

In a tweet posted to announce the new tracks, Swift said, “I think of Midnights as a complete concept album, with those 13 songs forming a full picture of the intensities of that mystifying, mad hour. However! There were other songs we wrote on our journey to find that magic 13.”

It seems the hard work has paid off, with fans and critics alike raving about the concepts and the synthesized beats courtesy of Jack Antonoff. 

RELATED: ‘All Too Well’ Lyric Change Tells Us How Taylor Swift Feels About Dating Jake Gyllenhaal & Their Age Gap

Victoria Soliz is a writer with YourTango who covers news and entertainment content. Her work explores pop culture trends, film and TV, and celebrity news