Taylor Swift has long been known for her incredibly honest lyrics.
Whether she’s making fun of her reputation with songs like “Blank Space” or “Shake it Off,” or getting more emotionally vulnerable with songs like “Delicate,” Taylor has often left it all out there.
Her song “The Archer” from her album Lover is perhaps her most self-aware song yet.
In the song, Taylor gets real about her insecurities in relationships and questions whether she’s worth sticking around for. In the chorus, she sings,
“Who could ever leave me, darling / But who could stay?”
The song is most likely about her boyfriend Joe Alwyn, who she’s been dating for more than two years, and whether or not he’ll stick around in the long run. She wonders if he can “see right through her,” afraid that if he sees the real her, he’ll bolt. She sings,
“Can you see right through me? / They see right through / They see right through me / I see right through me”
The song is reminiscent of “Delicate,” in which she sings,
“My reputation’s never been worse, so / You must like me for me.”
But “The Archer” is perhaps even more relatable than “Delicate.” Who amongst us hasn’t wondered if we were worthy of our partners? Who hasn’t thought, “why is this person with me?”
Ahead of the song’s release, Taylor said,
“There’s a lot that’s covered, emotionally. And I really wanted to give you track 5 before the album came out. Track 5 is kind of a tradition that really started with you guys because I didn’t realize I was doing this, because as I was making albums, I don’t know why, but instinctively, I was putting a very emotional, honest track as track 5.”
Previous track five songs have included “Delicate,” “All Too Well,” and “All You Had to Do Was Stay.”
Taylor also mentions that “The Archer” isn’t actually a single from the album but just a song that she really wanted to share ahead of Lover‘s release. She currently has no plans to make a music video for the song but perhaps the overwhelmingly positive fan reactions will change her mind.