tolerate it by Taylor Swift Lyrics Meaning – Unveiling the Layers of Emotional Storytelling


You can view the lyrics, alternate interprations and sheet music for Taylor Swift's tolerate it at Lyrics.org.
Article Contents:
  1. Music Video
  2. Lyrics
  3. Song Meaning

Lyrics

I sit and watch you reading with your
Head low
I wake and watch you breathing with your
Eyes closed
I sit and watch you
And notice everything you do or don’t do
You’re so much older and wiser and I

I wait by the door like I’m just a kid
Use my best colors for your portrait
Lay the table with the fancy shit
And watch you tolerate it
If it’s all in my head tell me now
Tell me I’ve got it wrong somehow
I know my love should be celebrated
But you tolerate it

I greet you with a battle hero’s welcome
I take your indiscretions all in good fun
I sit and listen
I polish plates until they gleam and glisten
You’re so much older and wiser and I

I wait by the door like I’m just a kid
Use my best colors for your portrait
Lay the table with the fancy shit
And watch you tolerate it
If it’s all in my head tell me now
Tell me I’ve got it wrong somehow
I know my love should be celebrated
But you tolerate it

While you were out building other worlds, where was I?
Where’s that man who’d throw blankets over my barbed wire?
I made you my temple, my mural, my sky
Now I’m begging for footnotes in the story of your life
Drawing hearts in the byline
Always taking up too much space or time
You assume I’m fine
But what would you do if I, I

Break free and leave us in ruins
Took this dagger in me and removed it
Gain the weight of you then lose it
Believe me, I could do it
If it’s all in my head tell me now
Tell me I’ve got it wrong somehow
I know my love should be celebrated
But you tolerate it

I sit and watch you

Full Lyrics

The artistry of Taylor Swift often goes beyond catchy melodies and head-bobbing beats. In the tapestry of her song ‘tolerate it’, Swift weaves a poignant narrative of unreciprocated devotion, painting a solemn vignette of love that is merely endured, rather than cherished. The track, a gem from her album ‘evermore’, encapsulates the raw emotion and narrative prowess for which Swift has been celebrated.

At face value, ‘tolerate it’ might seem like a melancholy reflection on a relationship’s imbalance. However, a deeper analysis reveals a labyrinth of intricacies that speak volumes about acknowledgment, longing, and the quiet despair of feeling underappreciated. Here, we delve into this lyrical odyssey, deconstructing the masterful storytelling elements that make the song resonate with a universal audience.

The Portrait of Unequal Love

Swift’s portrayal of love in ‘tolerate it’ is starkly contrasted with the imagery of a one-sided artistic endeavor. Using ‘my best colors for your portrait’ as a metaphor, she captures the essence of giving one’s all to a person who may not fully value it. This creates a vivid emotional landscape where the listener can feel the weight of her trying to beautify a relationship that remains indifferent.

The premise of unbalanced affection is a familiar territory in Swift’s discography, yet with ‘tolerate it’, the artist plunges deeper into the psyche of an individual yearning for more than just a passive acceptance. In juxtaposing her devoted actions with the partner’s lackluster reactions, Swift evokes a poignant sense of what it feels like to adore without being adored in return.

A Reflection on Self-Worth and Validation

There’s an underlying question of self-worth that pervades the track. The repetition of ‘If it’s all in my head tell me now’ is not just a plea for honesty, but also a heartbreaking acknowledgement of self-doubt. The song captures a moment where the protagonist questions their perception and worth in the eyes of their partner, and by extension, the world.

By declaring ‘I know my love should be celebrated’, Swift isn’t just referring to the grandiosity of romance but also to the basic human need for recognition and appreciation. This sentiment resonates deeply with anyone who has felt their love taken for granted, further cementing Swift’s status as a chronicler of the human condition.

The Hidden Meaning Behind the Elegance

Beneath the surface of elegant table settings and metaphorical artistry lies a hidden layer of quiet rebellion and introspection. ‘tolerate it’ can be seen as an anthem for those who recognize the disparity in their relationships and grapple with the decision of whether to continue enduring or to break free. The juxtaposition of domestic imagery with internal strife is a signature of Swift’s lyrical prowess.

In the lines ‘Gain the weight of you then lose it/Believe me, I could do it’, there is a confrontation with the possibility of leaving, which offers a glimpse into an internal struggle for independence. The song subtly shifts from a narrative of passive endurance to one of potential empowerment.

Memorable Lines That Haunt and Resonate

‘tolerate it’ is rife with lines that pull at the heartstrings and stay with the listener long after the music has stopped. One such line, ‘I made you my temple, my mural, my sky’, is a testament to the devotion and magnanimity of the protagonist’s love. These words elevate the love described from a simple emotion to something resembling worship, a sanctified and transcendent force.

Yet, it’s the aftermath represented in ‘Now I’m begging for footnotes in the story of your life’ that hits the hardest. It speaks to a feeling of diminishing significance and the realization that one has become an afterthought in the saga of someone they held in such high regard. Such poignancy emboldens the narrative, giving it an almost literary quality.

The Complex Tapestry of Emotion and Resolution

‘tolerate it’ navigates complex emotional waters, exploring the duality of enduring a tepid relationship while yearning for a more passionate connection. Swift’s ability to embody these feelings without resorting to cliché or melodrama demonstrates her maturity as a songwriter.

The resolution of the song is not clear-cut—they haven’t broken free, nor have they been engulfed by acceptance. Instead, Swift leaves the outcome ambiguous, reflecting the true nature of emotional conflicts. This choice not only adds depth to the song but also invites listeners to contemplate their own analogous experiences, completing the narrative through personal reflection.

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