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Taylor Swift teases fans with ‘casually cruel’ crossword puzzle

Taylor Swift has shared a cryptic crossword puzzle, leaving fans to decode its meaning.

The singer posted the animated crossword on social media on Thursday, writing: “*presses post* *cackles maniacally* Level: casually cruel in the name of being honest.”

The video features an animated vault opening to release 13 batches of scrambled letters – presumably so that fans can reassemble them in the correct order.

Swift didn’t specify what the letters mean or what project this is in relation to. Some fans believe the puzzle spells out “Phoebe Bridgers” (among other words), which could suggest a possible collaboration between the two singers.

It seems likely that the crossword puzzle is related to Swift’s forthcoming re-recorded version of Red, her 2012 album.

Fans have also spotted the word “Ronan” in the puzzle, which is the title of a song released by Swift in 2012 as a standalone single inspired by four-year-old Ronan Thompson, who died of cancer aged four. Swift performed the song that year at a Stand Up to Cancer telethon, and proceeds went to cancer charities.

Ronan’s mother Maya Thompson recently announced on her blog that Swift had asked for her permission to include “Ronan” on her re-release of Red, which Thompson said she had granted unreservedly.

Swift is re-recording the albums she previously released with Big Machine Records due to a dispute with the label over her masters.

Red (Taylor’s Version) is scheduled for release on 19 November 2021. It will be Swift’s second re-recorded album. The first, Fearless (Taylor's Version) came out in April this year.

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