What is the context of Wyatt's poem "The Lover Recounteth the Variable  Fancy of His Fickle Mistress"?

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linda-allen | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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The context of Wyatt's poem is that of a lover pondering the fickle nature of his mistress. The poem centers around one question: Is it possible? The poet then describes what it is that he is wondering could be possible.

Is it possible for someone to be seemingly madly in love, and then seem to despise the lover, only to swing back to being in love again?

In other words, it seems as if the speaker is dealing with his lady's mood swings:

Is it possible?
    Is it possible?
So cruel intent,
So hasty heat, and so soon spent,
From love to hate, and thence for to relent ?
Is it possible ?
    Is it possible?
That any may find,
Within one heart so diverse mind,
To change or turn as weather and wind,
Is it possible ?

His conclusion: Anything is possible!

Sources:

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