(Lord’s day). Lay long talking with my wife, then Mr. Holliard came to me and let me blood, about sixteen ounces, I being exceedingly full of blood and very good. I begun to be sick; but lying upon my back I was presently well again, and did give him 5s. for his pains, and so we parted, and I, to my chamber to write down my journall from the beginning of my late journey to this house.
Dined well, and after dinner, my arm tied up with a black ribbon, I walked with my wife to my brother Tom’s; our boy waiting on us with his sword, which this day he begins to wear, to outdo Sir W. Pen’s boy, who this day, and Sir W. Batten’s too, begin to wear new livery; but I do take mine to be the neatest of them all.
I led my wife to Mrs. Turner’s pew, and the church being full, it being to hear a Doctor who is to preach a probacion sermon, I went out to the Temple and there walked, and so when church was done went to Mrs. Turner’s, and after a stay there, my wife and I walked to Grays Inn, to observe fashions of the ladies, because of my wife’s making some clothes. Thence homewards, and called in at Antony Joyce’s, where we found his wife brought home sick from church, and was in a convulsion fit. So home and to Sir W. Pen’s and there supped, and so to prayers at home and to bed.

long in my blood
full of blood sick
lying on my back
in pain my arm tied up
my waiting word

and I hear a doctor
reach out and turn
to ash


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Sunday 4 May 1662.

In an effort to make things tidier for people reading Via Negativa on mobile devices, I’ve combined two navigation bars into one. (It’s way up there at the top on the present theme, which may change soon.) The links to The Morning Porch, Moving Poems, DaveBonta.com and LuisaIgloria.com are all still there, but they’re subsidiary to (logically enough) the Links tab, so mouse-over that for the drop-down list on larger screens. I assume that people who habitually browse the web on their mobiles will by now recognize the three-line icon for expandable menus.

Sir W. Pen and I by coach to St. James’s, and there to the Duke’s Chamber, who had been a-hunting this morning and is come back again. Thence to Westminster, where I met Mr. Moore, and hear that Mr. Watkins is suddenly dead since my going. To dinner to my Lady Sandwich, and Sir Thomas Crew’s children coming thither, I took them and all my Ladys to the Tower and showed them the lions and all that was to be shown, and so took them to my house, and there made much of them, and so saw them back to my Lady’s. Sir Thomas Crew’s children being as pretty and the best behaved that ever I saw of their age.
Thence, at the goldsmith’s, took my picture in little, which is now done, home with me, and pleases me exceedingly and my wife. So to supper and to bed, it being exceeding hot.

I am he who had
been hunting and
is come back dead
to all I own,
to my house made
of children and gold,
to my picture
which is now
done with me.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Saturday 3 May 1662.

Early to coach again and to Kingston, where we baited a little, and presently to coach again and got early to London, and I found all well at home, and Mr. Hunt and his wife had dined with my wife to-day, and been very kind to my wife in my absence. After I had washed myself, it having been the hottest day that has been this year, I took them all by coach to Mrs. Hunt’s, and I to Dr. Clerke’s lady, and gave her her letter and token. She is a very fine woman, and what with her person and the number of fine ladies that were with her, I was much out of countenance, and could hardly carry myself like a man among them; but however, I staid till my courage was up again, and talked to them, and viewed her house, which is most pleasant, and so drank and good-night. And so to my Lord’s lodgings, where by chance I spied my Lady’s coach, and found her and my Lady Wright there, and so I spoke to them, and they being gone went to Mr. Hunt’s for my wife, and so home and to bed.

Lit again.
If my absence were
with her
I could carry my age.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Friday 2 May 1662.