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Taylor Swift’s Former Teacher Says She ‘Always’ Wrote Poetry — ‘Even When She Shouldn’t’ 

Feature Taylor Swift Elementary School Teacher Says She Always Wrote Poetry
Taylor Swift Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for TAS Rights Management

It turns out Taylor Swift has been a tortured poet since childhood.

Following the recent release of her album The Tortured Poets Department, the 34-year-old singer’s former elementary school teacher Barbara Kolvek shared with CBS Philadelphia that Swift has a long relationship with poetry.

“She always was writing poetry, always. Even in music class, even when she shouldn’t,” Kolvek said in an interview published Saturday, April 20.

The retired teacher, who taught Swift from first through fourth grade at Wyndcroft School in Pottstown, Pennsylvania, added that she gave the multi-platinum winning performer her first singing solo. “‘Fast Talk Freddie,’ I believe it was called,” Kolvek recounted.

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The pair have stayed in touch over the years, exchanging emails with one another. “I feel like maybe I gave her a little spark or encouragement to do what she was doing,” Kolvek said.

Prior to releasing TTPD, Swift peppered her work with nods to her love of poetry and literature, including an homage to Robert Frost’s poem “The Road Not Taken” in the song “The Outside” from her self-titled debut album. “I tried to take the road less traveled by,” she sings. “But nothing seems to work the first few times, am I right?”

Taylor Swift Elementary School Teacher Says She Always Wrote Poetry
Taylor Swift Ashok Kumar/TAS24/Getty Images for TAS Rights Management

In 2010, Swift revealed that she was inspired by the words of Dr. Seuss to take up her own poetry journey.

“A lot of people who gravitate toward music are really, really sort of drawn to poetry because the words all have a rhythm and it comes together just right,” she said during a talk at Scholastic headquarters. “I love poetry, because if you get it right, if you put the right rhymes at the right ends of the sentences, you can almost make words bounce off a page.”

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The “Down Bad” singer added that she entered her poem “Monster in My Closet” in a national poetry contest when she was in fourth grade. Though she didn’t win, the poem did place in the competition. One fan has since managed to dig up Swift’s poem, sharing a screenshot of her words via X in 2022.

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“There’s a monster in my closet and I don’t know what to do!/Have you ever seen him? / Has he ever pounced on you?” Swift began. “I wonder what he looks like!/Is he purple with red eyes? / I wonder what he likes to eat. / What about his size!!”

She concluded, “If he’s nice, I’ll name him ‘Happy.’ / If he’s bad I’ll name him ‘Grouch.’ / I suspect that he is leaving, but if not… I’ll kick him out!”

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