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Music Video

The Tortured Poets Department Lyrics


Taylor Swift

 

Song Facts

  • Genre: Pop, Alternative Pop, Synth-Pop
  • Producers: Jack Antonoff, Taylor Swift
  • Writers: Taylor Swift, Jack Antonoff
  • Release Date: April 19, 2024
  • Album: THE TORTURED POETS DEPARTMENT: THE ANTHOLOGY (2024)
  • Labels: Republic Records
  • First appearance on Hot 100: Debuted at #4
  • Mixing Engineers: Șerban Ghenea, Bryce Bordone
  • Mastering Engineers: Randy Merrill, Ryan Smith

Artist Info

Taylor Swift is a renowned American singer-songwriter known for her narrative songwriting and genre-spanning music. With numerous awards and record-breaking albums, she continues to evolve her sound while maintaining her core storytelling essence. Her collaborations with producers like Jack Antonoff have further refined her music, blending introspective lyrics with innovative production.

Song Annotations and Meaning

"The Tortured Poets Department" by Taylor Swift delves into the complexities of a tumultuous relationship. The song paints a vivid picture of two individuals who, despite their artistic inclinations, find themselves grappling with self-doubt and mutual sabotage. In the first verse, Swift describes a lover who left a typewriter at her apartment, symbolizing their artistic nature and perhaps outdated methods. The line "I think some things I never say, like 'Who uses typewriters anyway?'" reflects her internal dialogue and hints at her partner's stubborn adherence to old habits. The lover's tendency for self-sabotage is depicted through the metaphor of "throwing spikes down on the road," illustrating how they create obstacles in their own path. Despite these flaws, Swift acknowledges her unique understanding of them with "Who else decodes you?" The chorus juxtaposes their intense connection with a candid acknowledgment of their limitations. Swift mocks the romanticized comparison to famous poets Dylan Thomas and Patti Smith, highlighting the absurdity of their pretensions by calling themselves "modern idiots." The repeated question, "Who's gonna hold you like me?" underscores the irreplaceable bond they share, despite their flaws. In the second verse, Swift continues to explore their intimate moments, such as sharing chocolate and discussing other artists like Charlie Puth. These mundane yet intimate details reveal the depth of their relationship. The lover's recurring dread and self-destructive tendencies are likened to "pounding nails in your head," suggesting a chronic state of anxiety and turmoil. The bridge adds another layer of complexity, revealing the mutual dependency and emotional turbulence in their relationship. Swift mentions how the lover would threaten self-harm if she ever left, a stark illustration of their codependency. The line about moving her ring to her wedding finger symbolizes a fleeting yet intense moment of commitment, intensifying the emotional stakes. The song concludes with Swift reiterating the uniqueness of their bond, even as she acknowledges their shared foolishness. The imagery of the typewriter and the "tortured poets department" encapsulates their shared artistic identity and emotional struggles.

Personal Reflection

"The Tortured Poets Department" captures the essence of a deeply flawed yet passionate relationship. Taylor Swift's lyrics poignantly explore the tension between love and self-sabotage, painting a picture of two individuals bound by their artistic souls and emotional turmoil. The song's introspective tone and vivid imagery resonate with anyone who has experienced the highs and lows of a complex relationship. Swift's candid portrayal of vulnerability and mutual dependence makes this track a compelling addition to her discography, offering a raw and honest look at love and its many intricacies.

The Tortured Poets Department Song Lyrics

The Tortured Poets Department by Taylor Swift


You left your typewriter at my apartment
Straight from the tortured poets department
I think some things I never say
Like, "Who uses typewriters anyway?"
But you're in self-sabotage mode
Throwing spikes down on the road
But I've seen this episode and still loved the show
Who else decodes you?

[Chorus]
And who's gonna hold you like me?
And who's gonna know you, if not me?
I laughed in your face and said
"You're not Dylan Thomas, I'm not Patti Smith
This ain't the Chelsea Hotel, we'rе modern idiots"
And who's gonna hold you like me?

[Post-Chorus]
Nobody
No-f**king-body
Nobody

[Verse 2]
You smokеd, then ate seven bars of chocolate
We declared Charlie Puth should be a bigger artist
I scratch your head, you fall asleep
Like a tattooed golden retriever
But you awaken with dread
Pounding nails in your head
But I've read this one where you come undone
I chose this cyclone with you
[Chorus]
And who's gonna hold you like me?
(Who's gonna hold you? Who's gonna hold you?)
And who's gonna know you like me?
(Who's gonna know you?)
I laughed in your face and said
"You're not Dylan Thomas, I'm not Patti Smith
This ain't the Chelsea Hotel, we're modern idiots"
And who's gonna hold you like me?
(Who's gonna hold you? Who's gonna hold you?)

[Post-Chorus]
No-f**king-body
(Who's gonna hold you? Who's gonna hold you?)
Nobody
(Who's gonna hold you? Gonna know you? Gonna troll you?)
Nobody

[Bridge]
Sometimes, I wonder if you're gonna screw this up with me
But you told Lucy you'd kill yourself if I ever leave
And I had said that to Jack about you, so I felt seen
Everyone we know understands why it's meant to be
'Cause we're crazy
So tell me, who else is gonna know me?
At dinner, you take my ring off my middle finger
And put it on the one people put wedding rings on
And that's the closest I've come to my heart exploding
[Chorus]
Who's gonna hold you? (Who?)
Me
Who's gonna know you? (Who?)
Me
And you're not Dylan Thomas, I'm not Patti Smith
This ain't the Chelsea Hotel, we're two idiots
Who's gonna hold you?

[Post-Chorus]
Who's gonna hold you?
Who's gonna hold you?
Who's gonna hold you?
Who's gonna hold you?
Who's gonna hold you?
Who's gonna hold you?
Who's gonna hold you?
Gonna know you? Gonna troll you?

[Outro]
You left your typewriter at my apartment
Straight from the tortured poets department
Who else decodes you?



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