Some of Taylor Swift’s listeners believe they have deciphered the meaning of a particularly sad new song. Swift released “Midnights,” her tenth studio album, at midnight on Friday. Later that night, at 3 a.m., she released “Midnights (3 am Edition),” which includes seven new tracks. Many Redditors believe that Swift’s “Bigger Than the Whole Sky” is about her having a miscarriage.
Swift begins the mournful ballad with the lyrics, “No words arise before me in the aftermath.” My eyes and ears fill with salt, and everything I touch turns sick with melancholy, for it’s all over and gone to sea. Following this, the chorus repeats, “Farewell, goodbye, goodbye / You were bigger than the whole sky / You were more than just a brief time.
And there is much for which I long; much which I must do without. The song ends with the lyrics, “I’m never going to meet what could’ve been, would’ve been, what should’ve been you.” Swift has experimented with singing songs from the views of different people on upcoming albums like 2020’s “Folklore” and “Evermore,” so it’s probable that she’s doing the same thing here with the “Midnights” project.
Swift has kept her pregnancy private. While some fans believe the “Lover” singer and her boyfriend of six years, Joe Alwyn, are married, the couple has never publicly confirmed their relationship status. Despite this, hundreds of Redditors have spoken out in a forum on the significance of “Bigger Than the Whole Sky,” each offering their own personal account of a miscarriage.
“Ah. I recently experienced an early pregnancy loss and was unprepared for the emotional impact this thread would have on me, one forum user wrote. Another participant shared, “I’ve had 3 losses, the most recent being in January at almost 12 weeks, where I passed my baby at home and held her.”
I’m expecting my rainbow baby any day now. I broke down into tears as soon as I heard this song, and my husband did, too, when I played it for him. This perfectly captured how I felt after a miscarriage, and how I feel now when I remember that time. I’ve never felt this strongly about a piece of music before.
“I guess infertility in general could fit,” reasoned one commenter. The news of a diagnosis has the potential to devastate a person. When you’re young, you imagine a life where you and the love of your life have many children and grandchildren. When you learn that this is not certain, you experience a pang of regret over the “what ifs.”
One listener said, “This song gives me pregnancy loss just as much as ‘Labyrinth,'” a reference to another new Swift song. She sang lines from “Labyrinth,” including “It only hurts this much right now” and “Breathe in, breathe through, breathe deep, breathe out.” This makes me think of labor and delivery. The discomfort of contractions, and the reassurances we give ourselves that it’s just temporary. The woman wrote that she was told to breathe in and out throughout contractions.
Swift’s 19-year-old relationship with chronic heartbreaker John Mayer has been linked by her fans to the song “Would’ve, Could’ve, Should’ve” from the “3 am Edition.” Swift sings about Mayer, who is 13 years her senior, “Give me back my girlhood, it was mine first / And I damn sure never would’ve never danced with the devil.”