The Poignant Meaning Behind “Bigger Than the Whole Sky” by Taylor Swift

Bigger Than the Whole Sky” is one of Taylor Swift‘s most personal songs to date. She recently brought it out at an Eras Tour show in South America, seemingly in honor of her fan, Ana Clara Benevides Machado, who died prior to her show. The song’s powers of comfort amid grief were well on display while Swift poured her heart out on stage.

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While the song seemed to be the perfect choice to help her fans grieve, it was written with other inspirations in mind. What made Swift want to pen this somber track? We can’t know for sure, but check out our analysis, below.

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Behind the Meaning

The line So I’ll say words I don’t believe is really the crux of this track. The lyrics seem to be a sort of affirmation for Swift. Though she hasn’t come right out and explained who or what inspired this track, we can tell it was written with a heavy heart. Swift finds a way to cope with this track, issues a goodbye, and tries to move on.

The opening verse paints a picture of Swift with a tear-stained face, speechless while trying to recover. No words appear before me in the aftermath / Salt streams out my eyes and into my ears, she sings. She submits that it’s all out to sea. It’s a feeling anyone experiencing grief will know well. There’s nothing to do, but try to find ways to muddle through.

Did some bird flap its wings over in Asia? / Did some force take you because I didn’t pray? she asks in the second verse. She enters the bargaining stage of her grief, trying to find some sort of rational reason for her loss. In the end, she decides it’s just not meant to be.

Some fans have theorized this song could be about a miscarriage or some other untimely loss. Of course, we wouldn’t venture to guess what goes on in Swift’s private life, but the emotion is palpable in this song—whatever the cause.

In the chorus, she waves one final goodbye: Goodbye, goodbye, goodbye / You were bigger than the whole sky / You were more than just a short time.

I’ve got a lot to live without
I’m never gonna meet
What could’ve been, would’ve been
What should’ve been you

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