In his new cover story with Rolling Stone, the One Direction singer opens up about his famous ex-girlfriend. While he still doesn’t know if he’s the subject of song like “Style” and “Out of the Woods,” the 23-year-old has nothing but respect for Swift. In fact, he thinks it’s flattering if the songstress wrote about their failed romance.
“I mean, I don’t know if they’re about me or not,” he tells the magazine, “but the issue is, she’s so good, they’re bloody everywhere.”
“I write from my experiences; everyone does that. I’m lucky if everything [we went through] helped create those songs,” he continues. “That’s what hits your heart. That’s the stuff that’s hardest to say, and it’s the stuff I talk least about. That’s the part that’s about the two people. I’m never going to tell anybody everything.”
“She doesn’t need me to tell her they’re great. They’re great songs,” he adds. “It’s the most amazing unspoken dialogue ever.”
Styles and Swift, 27, went public in 2012 when paparazzi snapped pictures of them on a date in New York City’s Central Park. The couple broke things off a month later following a vacation in the Caribbean.
“When I see photos from that day,” Styles shares, “I think: Relationships are hard, at any age. And adding in that you don’t really understand exactly how it works when you’re 18, trying to navigate all that stuff didn’t make it easier.”
He explains, “I mean, you’re a little bit awkward to begin with. You’re on a date with someone you really like. It should be that simple, right? It was a learning experience for sure. But at the heart of it — I just wanted it to be a normal date.”
Styles — who has crossed paths with Swift after their breakup, but narrowly avoided speaking to his ex — admits he doesn’t know what he’ll say to her should they ever come face-to-face again. “Certain things don’t work out. There’s a lot of things that can be right, and it’s still wrong. In writing songs about stuff like that, I like tipping a hat to the time together. You’re celebrating the fact it was powerful and made you feel something, rather than ‘this didn’t work out, and that’s bad,'” he says. “And if you run into that person, maybe it’s awkward, maybe you have to get drunk … but you shared something. Meeting someone new, sharing those experiences, it’s the best shit ever. So thank you.”