Question… Desire to Touch Women is Taylor Swift’s Real Nemeses [Part 8]

1 Dec

Taylor wins the pronoun game.  I’m not even going to try to untangle the speaker/recipient/changing characters in this song.  It was written so convoluted that I haven’t even seen a satisfactory answer to this yet.  Instead, I took lyric snippets from other songs featuring the same word, to get a feeling about Taylor’s sentiment and even ascertain the subject. Don’t get overwhelmed with the length of this post.  The word I’m trying to point-out from Question… lyrics is highlighted. 

When she said it was too much

Do you wish you could still touch her?

Touch:

sparks fly

Treacherous

state of grace

I Almost Do

Marjorie

You are in Love

Red

Gorgeous

It’s Nice to have a Friend

ready for it

end game

Delicate

gold rush

don’t blame me

Death by a Thousand Cuts

champagne problems

Ivy

Touch is trepidation. 

In Sparks Fly, Taylor can’t get too close to this person, or they might feel her attraction.  She is a house of cards, trying to remain unseen so the structure doesn’t topple and bely her true feelings.  Touch is a boundary Taylor won’t allow herself to cross.  In Treacherous, Taylor is confronted with the same situation and she’s no longer sure if it’s a choice.  She gets so close to the person, yet does not touch.  It’s not real if they don’t actually touch.  This path is reckless and fraught, but Taylor finds herself liking it.  In State of Grace, Taylor is still battling these feelings.  She realizes wanting touch like this has changed who she thought she was-she’ll never be the same. 

There is a slight double meaning in I Almost Do.  Sure, Taylor is talking about rekindling a romance after a break up.  But under the surface, Taylor is now dreaming of touching this woman.  She is one step closer to crossing her boundaries.  She almost does.  We talked about how the depths signify Taylor’s fears of losing control and the unknown, in Marjory.  Touch fits with the song narrative perfectly.  For once you let go of all your fears and ghosts.  You knew what it was.  Taylor can’t deny it any longer, this desire to touch women is proof her best friend is actually romantic love and sexual attraction.  Wishing you had never found out in Red, builds on this idea.  Now that Taylor knows she’s gay, she feels more for her love interest.  It’s out of her control screeching a speeding car to a sudden stop, flying through the free fall, yet she can’t go without it.  She’s blue when this person is gone, gray when she’s all alone.  Despite Taylor’s great fear, and her negative feelings about being out of control, she can’t let go of this red, passionate love. 

Taylor needs that real love, but it makes her angry.  I’m so furious that you make me feel this way, in Gorgeous is that same pull from Red.  Taylor doesn’t like losing control, but here she is captivated by this gorgeous woman.  Taylor dares to dream of her future with a woman in It’s Nice to have a Friend.  She has trouble crossing the boundary into queerness, but in that song the female best friend dares to touch her romantically and it sends Taylor’s thoughts to a future wedding.  She is coming around to the idea that, though gay love is not traditional or fully accepted, she might be able to be happy anyway.  Ready for It…  the opener of Reputation shows a new bravado about the situation.  Taylor goes from he (the beard) to you (the gal she’s in love with) describing her future plans.  She will keep the beard as a cover for the WLW love forever, and at night all the touching that Taylor needs can take place in private.  

Taylor jealously guards her new found love with a woman in End Game, Delicate, and Gold Rush.  Now that she crossed her boundaries and touched a woman, Taylor can’t be without it.  She has fear and anxiety this person will leave her, they’ll chose someone else (a man?) over her.  And the thought of that makes Taylor miserable.  Taylor is so obsessed about keeping this new found love that she compares it to drug addiction.  Don’t Blame Me has Taylor, high on her lover’s touch, begging on her knees, and giving up grace to touch her.  Touch is forbidden and dangerous, but now touch is now a desperate need of Taylor’s.

But then there are political complications.  In Death by a Thousand Cuts Taylor describes how her and her lover’s paper thin plans were ruined by Trump.  Her lover gave up on her like a bad drug despite touching every part of Taylor.  

Taylor was working up to coming out.  She wanted to do it for her lover.  She wrote speeches…  But they ended up in the fire.  She couldn’t give an adequate reason why she just couldn’t bring herself to do it.  WLW slipped beyond her reaches as a result.  Now Taylor grieves for the living.  The tarnished (stigmatized) touch was the only thing that made Taylor feel and come in from the cold, numbing snow.  Though Taylor was unthawed by this love, and her whole being was impacted, her inaction caused the lover to leave.

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