They Flee from Me
by Sir Thomas Wyatt
They Flee from Me Summary
Our speaker complains about the fact that "they" keep running away from him. All right, but who are "they"? He describes this mysterious group as if they're birds, or some sort of animal. They used to stalk his chamber, barefoot, and take bread from his hand, but now they don't come around anymore. Instead, they roam free, seeking change.
But there was one, once, who was a little different. She (it turns out the mysterious "they" refers to women, who used to visit his bedroom at night) came to him, scantily clad, and kissed him. It wasn't a dream (he swears, you guys!), but it was a strange encounter nonetheless. After all, she just leaves him there, and goes off in search of other, new men. When all is said and done, he's not sure how this woman should be treated.