Kismet! Taylor Swift and Emily Dickinson Are Purportedly Related

A new Taylor Swift Easter egg has been revealed, and this one was hiding in the one place no one thought to look: her DNA. Genealogy company Ancestry announced today that Swift is related to none other than Emily Dickinson. How they came to that conclusion is unclear — did they have her do a saliva swab? — but according to Ancestry the Massachusetts poet is apparently Swift’s sixth cousin, three times removed. At that point, calling them related feels like a reach, but that’s just one blogger’s opinion. The purported familial tie between the two writers comes just about a month before Swift’s 11th album comes out, aptly titled The Tortured Poets Department. But this is only the latest connection between Swift and Dickinson.

Fans first clocked Swift as a potential Dickinson fan back when Evermore came out at the end of 2020. On the album’s closer and titular song, Swift sings, “This pain wouldn’t be for evermore.” Dickinson ends the poem “One sister I have in our house,” with the words “Sue — forevermore!” Depending on how much you care, this could be Swift choosing to use a word that has a bit more of a flourish or it could be her acknowledging Dickinson as both an influence and a cousin.

A year after that album came out, the song “Ivy” was featured on the Apple TV+ show Dickinson. Fans had previously speculated that this song was about Dickinson and her sister-in-law Sue (from the aforementioned poem), with whom the poet was in love. On the show, “Ivy” was featured in the episode in which Emily and Sue have a sex scene. But wait, there’s more!

Evermore came out at midnight on December 10 — Dickinson’s birthday. Swift told Entertainment Weekly that the inspiration for the Folklore album cover was “this girl sleepwalking through the forest in a nightgown in 1830.” Who was born in 1830? Yes, the French poet Frédéric Mistral but also the American poet Emily Dickinson. Do you think I’m done?

In 2022, while accepting the Nashville Songwriters Association International award for Songwriter-Artist of the Decade, Swift revealed that she categorizes her songs into “quill lyrics, fountain-pen lyrics, and glitter-gel-pen lyrics.” You won’t believe who she mentioned when describing quill lyrics.

“If I was inspired to write it after reading Charlotte Brontë or after watching a movie where everyone is wearing poet shirts and corsets,” Swift said, referring to a different 19th-century author, “If my lyrics sound like a letter written by Emily Dickinson’s great-grandmother while sewing a lace curtain, that’s me writing in the quill genre.” What she didn’t know at the time was that Dickinson’s great-grandmother was her … fifth cousin twice removed? Sorry, I won’t pretend I understand how any of that works. What I know for sure is that it’s time for Swifties to add a new color of (invisible) string to their corkboards.

Taylor Swift and Emily Dickinson Are Purportedly Related