Stars drawn around scars. A cardigan that still bears the scent of loss twenty years later. Battleships sinking into the ocean, down, down, down. The tree swing in the woods of my childhood. Hushed tones of “let’s run away” and never doing it. The sun drenched month of August, sipped away like a bottle of wine. A mirrored disco ball hovering above a dance floor. A whiskey bottle beckoning. Hands held through plastic. A single thread that, for better or for worse, ties you to your fate.from folklore‘s prologue
That is how Taylor Swift describes her new album folklore, an introspective and emotional journey into the world of folktales and legends and myths. In isolation she dove into fantasy and imagination to create a new story world, and with this release, she asks her fans to take these stories and “pass them down.”
Most fiction writers have a special relationship with music, for sharing sprawling playlists that they created to listen to as they write, to convey a certain mood, to get to know a character, or even to help plot emotional beats.
Folklore and folk stories have a powerful hold on both history and the future. They are created to encapsulate a moment so poignant that it can’t be lost in time or forgotten; but as life moves on they find new homes and lovers. They are reimagined and reshaped to fit the hopes and dreams of those currently enamored by them and are then retold yet again to a new audience, growing and changing while they follow countless destinies.
It is the goal of both authors and musicians–any artist, really–to create something that changes the world and outlives them.
INVISIBLE STRING, a non-profit online archive of short stories, poetry, and personal narratives based on the songs of Taylor Swift’s album folklore, seeks to be a part of that everlasting honor of a dream, and part of the life cycle of the stories told there.