Whoso List to Hunt

A poem by Thomas Wyatt which is said to be about Anne Boleyn. In it, Wyatt compares Anne to a deer being hunted (by Henry) and how this puts her out of Wyatt’s reach because she belonngs to the King.

Whoso List to Hunt

Whoso list to hunt, I know where is an hind,
But as for me, hélas, I may no more.
The vain travail hath wearied me so sore,
I am of them that farthest cometh behind.
Yet may I by no means my wearied mind
Draw from the deer, but as she fleeth afore
Fainting I follow. I leave off therefore,
Sithens in a net I seek to hold the wind.
Who list her hunt, I put him out of doubt,
As well as I may spend his time in vain.
And graven with diamonds in letters plain
There is written, her fair neck round about:
Noli me tangere, for Caesar’s I am,
And wild for to hold, though I seem tame.

By Thomas Wyatt

2 Responses to “Whoso List to Hunt”

  1. QueenOfAThousandDays says:

    the last four lines are simply genious…
    “for Caesar’s I am…”
    it’s a clever description of Anne’s ambition, Wyatt’s own disappointment, and Henry’s possessiveness towards Anne.

    [Reply]

  2. Simona says:

    And graven with diamonds in letters plain

    [Reply]

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