Welcome to this in-depth look at Taylor Swift’s song, “august,” from her 2020 album, “folklore.” We’ll dive into the meaning of her lyrics, the vibe she was going for, and how it all comes together into one beautiful work of art. Like with any great artist, there are layers upon layers to be uncovered and appreciated.
“august” is the eighth track on “folklore,” which makes sense given that August is the eighth month of the year. The song has a summer vibe filled with nostalgia, longing, and romanticism. It captures the feeling of fleeting love perfectly, making us feel like we’re right back in those youthful days when passion burned strong and bright and left just as swiftly.
Throughout the following sections, we’ll dive into different aspects of “august,” picking apart the official lyric video, discussing what makes it stand out from the rest of “folklore,” and diving into some fan theories about what exactly went down during that fateful August. So without further ado, let’s get started!
The Official Lyric Video
The official lyric video for “august” goes hand-in-hand with the song’s nostalgic feel. With its vintage aesthetic reminiscent of old home videos, it offers viewers not only a visual representation of the lyrics but also an invitation to journey back in time with Taylor Swift.
Upon first glance, you might think you’ve stumbled across an old home movie of a family vacation. Washed-out images of beaches, rural roads, and sun-soaked days present a wholesome snapshot of a bygone era, set against handwritten lyrics that occasionally overlay the visuals. It’s an apt pairing for a song steeped in memories and bittersweet endings.
That’s not to say, however, that the lyric video is all sunshine and rainbows. Subtle hints at a darker side of Swift’s narrative can be found throughout the video, lending further depth to this already emotionally rich ballad:
The sudden appearance of storm clouds amidst an otherwise sunny scene.
Shots of turbulent ocean waves that mirror the song’s turbulent emotions.
A lone figure on an empty beach, symbolizing the loneliness Swift sings about in “august.”
The fleeting nature of the visuals, mirroring the transient nature of the relationship detailed in the lyrics.
The vintage aesthetic creating an omnipresent sense of longing for something lost to time.
Clever use of symbolic colors, such as the green backdrop suggesting a sense of youthfulness and innocence.
Standout Qualities of “august”
Compared to other tracks on “folklore,” “august” stands out in more than a few ways. Not only does it possess an instantly catchy melody and upbeat vibe, but it also zeroes in on one specific, highly evocative theme: the feeling of precarious summer love.
This track features some of Swift’s most poetic and imaginative lyrics, painting a picture that is both sweeping in scope and intimate in detail. The storytelling takes center stage and followers of her music are left with a vivid, bittersweet image by the end of the song.
Additionally, the production elements of “august” contribute to its unique sound and feel. Producer Jack Antonoff creates a lush soundscape that perfectly complements the dreamy, nostalgic imagery brought on by Swift’s descriptive lyrics. Here’s how “august” sets itself apart from the rest of “folklore”:
Its shimmering, wistful melody that instantly captures a sense of summertime longing.
A driving beat that provides an energizing backbone to the track.
Poetic lyrics that evoke detailed images and paint a vivid story.
An emotional vulnerability that draws listeners in and makes them feel connected to the narrative.
The prominent use of stringed instruments creating a sweeping, cinematic quality.
A balance between pop sensibilities and alt-rock influences for a unique sonic experience.
Official Lyric Video
Vintage aesthetic, symbolic visuals, and emotional depth
Catchy melody, poetic lyrics, strong production
Possible connections to other songs, hints at personal experiences
Popular Fan Theories
No analysis of a Taylor Swift song would be complete without delving into fan theories! Swift is known for her intricate storytelling and clever layering of themes, often leaving fans speculating about the true meaning behind her lyrics. As for “august,” there are several popular theories that have caught the attention of enthusiasts:
One theory suggests that “august” is part of a trilogy of songs on “folklore” that recounts a love triangle from three different perspectives. These songs are supposedly connected, with each one giving insight into a separate point of view: “cardigan,” “august,” and “betty.” Much like the other two tracks, “august” tells its own specific tale while also contributing to the overall narrative arc.
Another possibility — popular with fans who prefer a more autobiographical lens on Swift’s work — is that “august” might be a reflection of her own romantic experiences. Swift has a history of incorporating personal elements into her songs, and keen observers believe they’ve spotted clues pointing to real-life events in her past. Here are some potential hints that support these theories:
The idea of a love triangle connecting “cardigan,” “august,” and “betty.”
The use of recurring motifs such as the mention of car rides, symbolizing escaping reality together.
Possible parallels between “august” and the song “Tim McGraw” from Swift’s debut album — another summer-themed, nostalgic track.
Lyrical references to the line “…’til the end of the summer,” suggesting the relationship was always destined to be temporary.
The emotional vulnerability that suggests Swift may have drawn from personal experiences in crafting this narrative.
The overall theme of nostalgia and dealing with the bittersweet memories of lost love — a common theme throughout Swift’s discography.
Ultimately, only Taylor Swift knows the true meaning behind “august,” but that doesn’t stop fans from continuing to speculate and interpret the song in their own unique ways.
“august” is a standout track from Taylor Swift’s critically acclaimed “folklore” album that captures the essence of fleeting summer love with heartfelt lyrics, evocative melodies, and nostalgic visuals. As we’ve explored in this detailed analysis, “august” combines powerful storytelling and masterful production to create a beautifully poignant listening experience.
Whether you’re a longtime Taylor Swift fan or just discovering her music, we hope this look into “august” has not only provided insight but also helped foster a deeper appreciation for the artistry Swift brings to each of her songs. As with any work of art, interpretations are subjective and ever-evolving, so feel free to continue exploring this enchanting track on your own and uncover even more layers of meaning.