The long wait is finally over. Harry Styles has officially released his debut solo album, Harry Styles, and boy, is there a lot to unpack in here. Styles has confessed that this album is his true brainchild and he had a hand in every part of its making, especially its writing. I find it very refreshing that at least co-writes Styles most of his own music, which obviously comes from his own experiences. And, since one of his own experiences is his relationship with a fellow famous pop star — is Styles' song "Two Ghosts" about Taylor Swift? The lyrics seem to pretty clearly paint a picture of their relationship, down to Swift's signature red lips.
Styles has stayed notoriously mum about his relationships in the past, including his brief time with Swift in 2012. Even though their fling was short-lived, their time together left a deep mark on both of them, and songs from both of them songs are now a good indicator of that.
In fact, Styles somewhat admitted (in a very awkward way) that "Two Ghosts" is about Swift in an interview on Nick Grimshaw’s BBC Radio 1 on the morning of his album's release. Grimshaw mentioned that he read a song was written about Swift and when asked what the lyrics were about, Styles answered,
“I think it’s pretty self-explanatory ... Sometimes things change, and you can do all the same things, and sometimes, it’s just different."
I don't see a denial here. Actually, once you listen to the song, it is fairly obvious that the "Two Ghosts" lyrics are a nod to his relationship with Swift, even down to the fact that it is an acoustic, country-style track. One of the most telling lyrics are the two opening lines,
"Same lips red, same eyes blue/ Same white shirt, couple more tattoos"
No other pop star in the past few years has been as connected with red lipstick as Swift has. The singer has worn her signature shade for many years, and has mentioned that fact in songs, particularly in "Style." In this song, rumored to be written about Styles, Swift sings, "And I got that red lip, classic thing that you like," and later on in the chorus, "You got that long hair slicked back, white T-shirt." Definitely sounds like Styles is responding.
In the second verse, Styles sings,
"The fridge light washes this room white / Moon dances over your good side / This was all we used to need"
A Genius contributor notes that Swift has a very similar lyric in her song "All Too Well" from her album, Red, in which she sings, "Cause there we are again in the middle of the night. We're dancing round the kitchen in the refrigerator light." Since Red came out in October 2012 before Swift and Styles were known to be dating, maybe Styles is just using the fridge line as a reference to make clear that Swift really is behind this song.
The chorus of the song is Styles admitting that this relationship has run its course and that there is nothing much left to salvage. He sings,
"We're not who we used to be / We're just two ghosts standing in the place of you and me."
I don't think there is a doubt that Styles wrote "Two Ghosts" about Swift. In his most recent cover story with Rolling Stone, he was asked if any music was written about her and he admitted,
“I write from my experiences; everyone does that. I’m lucky if everything [we went through] helped create those songs. That’s the stuff that’s hardest to say, and it’s the stuff I talk least about ... Certain things don’t work out. There’s a lot of things that can be right, and it’s still wrong. In writing songs about stuff like that, I like tipping a hat to the time together. You’re celebrating the fact it was powerful and made you feel something, rather than ‘this didn’t work out, and that’s bad.'”
Based on this explanation, it only makes sense that he would give a little nod to Swift and their brief relationship. It's definitely made an impact on both of them, and its a beautiful thing to see two artists share about the moments, and people, that changed their lives.