Tied Together with a Smile
Taylor Swift Lyrics


Jump to: Overall Meaning | Line by Line Meaning

Seems the only one who doesn't see your beauty
Is the face in the mirror looking back at you
You walk around here thinking you're not pretty
But that's not true 'cause I know you

Hold on, baby; you're losing it
The water's high, you're jumping into it
And letting go, and no one knows


That you cry; but you don't tell anyone
That you might not be the golden one
And you're tied together with a smile
But you're coming undone

I guess it's true that love was all you wanted
'Cause you're givin' it away like it's extra change
Hoping it will end up in his pocket
But he leaves you out like a penny in the rain
Oh, 'cause it's not his price to pay
It's not his price to pay

Hold on, baby; you're losing it
The water's high, you're jumping into it
And letting go, and no one knows
That you cry; but you don't tell anyone
That you might not be the golden one
And you're tied together with a smile
But you're coming undone

Hold on, baby; you're losing it
The water's high, you're jumping into it
And letting go, and no one knows
That you cry; but you don't tell anyone
That you might not be the golden one
And you're tied together with a smile
But you're coming undone

You're tied together with a smile
But you're coming undone, oh

Goodbye, baby
With a smile, baby, baby

Overall Meaning

Taylor Swift's "Tied Together with a Smile" is a soulful ballad that delves into the painful insecurity and need for validation prevalent among many young women. Swift begins the song by observing that the person who doubts their beauty the most is looking back at them from the mirror. She tells the listener that she knows they believe they're not beautiful, but it’s not true. Swift delivers a poignant message, reminding her fans that everyone struggles and beautiful people are not exempt from pain.


Although the person Swift sings to is trying to maintain a facade of happiness and a perfect life, she can see the cracks in their façade. From her lyrics, it is evident the person is so desperate for love and validation that they're giving their love away carelessly. Perhaps, they want to be noticed or appreciated by another person but sadly, these efforts are not reciprocated, causing them to feel lower and not pretty. This idea that self-worth is attached to someone else's feeling about you is a theme that Swift explores throughout some of her work.


Swift uses the metaphor of being "tied together with a smile" to illustrate how the person is a bundle of contradictions, struggling inwardly while projecting an outwardly happy demeanor. Throughout the ballad, there are hints that she is aware of how the facade is slipping, with the line "you're tied together with a smile, but you're coming undone." This line reminds us that no one can bury their pain for too long before it bubbles over.


Line by Line Meaning

Seems the only one who doesn't see your beauty
It appears as if you are the only one who does not appreciate your own beauty.


Is the face in the mirror looking back at you
The only entity that cannot see your beauty is the reflection staring back at you in the mirror.


You walk around here thinking you're not pretty
You believe that you are not good-looking, which makes you self-conscious.


But that's not true 'cause I know you
Contrary to what you believe, I am aware that you are attractive.


Hold on, baby; you're losing it
Please be patient as you seem to be losing grip on your emotions.


The water's high, you're jumping into it
It feels like you are jumping into deep waters, which might be difficult to get out of.


And letting go, and no one knows
You feel like you are letting go of things, and nobody knows how it affects you.


That you cry; but you don't tell anyone
You are most likely shedding tears, but you keep this information to yourself.


That you might not be the golden one
It is possible that you are not perfect or in the best situation.


And you're tied together with a smile
You present yourself in a certain manner, probably through smiling, despite how you're dealing with things.


But you're coming undone
Despite your effort to put on a good face, things seem to be falling apart.


I guess it's true that love was all you wanted
Perhaps all you wanted was to be loved.


'Cause you're givin' it away like it's extra change
You seem to be giving away your love without much thought, like excess coins.


Hoping it will end up in his pocket
You are probably hoping that the love you offer will be appreciated by someone who deserves it.


But he leaves you out like a penny in the rain
Your love might end up being disregarded, like a useless penny left in the rain.


Oh, 'cause it's not his price to pay
It might not be his responsibility to respond to your love the way you want him to.


You're tied together with a smile
You are maintaining a certain presentation of yourself, likely through smiling or happy appearances.


But you're coming undone, oh
Despite your efforts to keep it together, you are breaking down.


Goodbye, baby
Perhaps it is time to bid farewell to the situation causing your distress.


With a smile, baby, baby
As you leave, don't forget to smile, even though it might be tough.




Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group, OLE MEDIA MANAGEMENT LP, Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC
Written by: LIZ ROSE, TAYLOR SWIFT

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
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