Courtesy of Harpers Bazaar
Fans tend to listen closely to Taylor Swift
when she sings about the guy she is never ever, ever getting back together
with or her past relationship that felt like the color red
But to those trying to put a famous face to those post-breakup anthems
, the singer-songwriter explains just where she finds her inspiration – without revealing any names, of course.
"Some combinations of people are toxic, you know? You have to find the right one that isn't just going to explode into fiery ash and destruction," the Red
singer, 22, tells Harper's Bazaar
in its December/January issue. "Despite all of that and how unpleasant it is, as a writer you get a lot from it. It's a crazy justification system."
She adds: "You know that guy you really wish you could erase from your memory? But then the answer is track six, eight, 12 and 13."
Recently single after splitting
from Conor Kennedy, her whirlwind summer love interest
, Swift has a hint for her next boyfriend (ahem, song subject).
"It needs to be equal," she says. "If I feel too much like I'm wearing the pants
, I start to feel uncomfortable and then we break up."
A relationship, she adds, is "the ultimate collaboration." Still, she says, "It's wonderful to hand over the reins to your boyfriend when you control so much of these big, high-pressure decisions, you know? That is a huge defining factor in who you choose to be with."