Cracked: All ‘The Tortured Poets Department’ Easter Eggs Taylor Swift Scattered at the LA Pop-Up

Published 04/16/2024, 11:12 PM EDT

Taylor Swift has taught her fans so well they could practically turn into detectives. Secret surprises, encoded messages, and tricky clues are just some of the brain teasers Swift leaves for Swifties to uncover. Recently, the songstress celebrated the rollout of her next album, 'The Tortured Poets Department', with a pop-up library in Los Angeles in partnership with Spotify. The pop-up showcased a handpicked selection of poetry reflecting the feel of her new album- with books, visual delights, and a whole bunch of easter eggs! 

While Swifties are busy poking around every nook and cranny of the setup, here is the breakdown of the four major easter eggs the masterful marketer dropped.

Book titles and new lyrics


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All around the library, there were books, some had names, some did not. The ones with names were all songs from 'The Tortured Poets Department'. In the middle of everything, there was a really obvious clue at the pop-up event. It looked like an open book with words "One less temptress. One less dagger to sharpen" and “Even statues crumble if they’re made to wait". But there was one book that looked strange, and everyone wondered about it.

Right next to ‘Down Bad’, there was an old gray book with “Saint” written on it. That word might be talking about a line from Taylor Swift's song 'State of Grace' on her 'Red' album from way back in 2012 that said “So you were never a saint and I loved in shades of wrong”. The book looked faded because it was old, just like the 'Red' album, which came out over ten years ago. It is possible that Swift brought it back out because she had been feeling those same emotions while curating 'The Tortured Poets Department' too. 

Open Drawers

Eagle-eyed fans were quick to notice that six out of the 72 drawers in the library were open. Some said it could be a nod to how long Taylor Swift has been with Joe Alwyn- six years. There have been numerous rumors about her new album being all about their relationship, especially with the title seeming to nod to a group chat Alwyn had with friends Paul Mescal and Andrew Scott, named “The Tortured Man Club”.

People have also spotted that the six drawers in the library had flowers and cards sticking out. Plus, the drawers made a 9x8 grid, leading some to wonder if something (who knows what) might happen on August 9th or September 8th this year.

Considering that, it is also possible that the open mailboxes were not just thrown in randomly. They could be like breadcrumbs, leading to specific dates.

2 AM

A clock rested on the library drawers, showing 2:00, but without specifying if it was morning or night. It could be 2 a.M., considering Taylor Swift often mentions that time in her songs. And whenever she mentions 2 a.m., it is usually tied to some tough stuff she had been through. Like in 'I Wish You Would,' she sang about "2 am and I'm cursing your name", "2 am feeling like I just lost a friend" or "2 am who do you love?". Similarly impactful was the lyric “2 am and I’m still awake writing this song” from 'I Bet You Think About Me’. 

One idea is that 2 a.m. symbolizes hope or even the last bit of hope. They say 3 a.m. is 'The Witching Hour,' when one is most open to the spirit world- ghosts, friendly spirits, even demons. 2 a.m. is like the final stretch before the spooky stuff kicks in. For Swift, it could be like clinging to hope before facing her fears. But some think it could just mean a surprise merchandise drop at 2 p.m. or bonus tracks about to be released at 2 a.m. after her album drops on Friday, April 19.

Peace sign


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Swifties got curious when they spotted a peace sign figurine on one of the library’s bookshelves. Fans noticed that Taylor Swift often flashed that sign during her Eras Tour shows and even used it during her Grammys speech for 'The Tortured Pets Department'. Now, there is this theory floating around online that the sign stands for "TV’- short for 'Taylor’s Version'. And in Swifty Land, that means the billionaire pop star is the boss of the song being played. 

The 34-year-old has been redoing her albums for a while now, ever since her original records got sold without her knowing. So, some fans think Swift might be throwing up the "peace" sign to hint at a 'Taylor’s Version' album dropping alongside her new one. Basically, it could mean two albums hitting the shelves, not just the new one. 


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Taylor Swift Library Installation: What is The Genius Tactic behind 'The Tortured Poets Department's' Promotions?

What do you think about Taylor Swift’s easter eggs for 'The Tortured Poets Department'? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!



Hriddhi Maitra

1020 articles

Hriddhi Maitra is a Hollywood News reporter at Netflix Junkie. An enthusiastic movie buff, Hriddhi found her true calling when she worked as a Cinema Content Writer at My Cinema Story while analyzing movies objectively, and offering constructive feedback. Coming from a background where she worked in different niches like finance, food, travel, medicines, automobile, and entertainment, we can safely say she is a jack of all trades.

Edited By: Itti Mahajan