Reluctant Prophet

Early to wait upon my Lord at White Hall, and with him to the Duke’s chamber. So to my office in Seething Lane. Dined at home, and after dinner to my Lord again, who told me that he is ordered to go suddenly to sea, and did give me some orders to be drawing up against his going. This afternoon I agreed to let my house quite out of my hands to Mr. Dalton (one of the wine sellers to the King, with whom I had drunk in the old wine cellar two or three times) for 41l. At night made even at Privy Seal for this month against tomorrow to give up possession, but we know not to whom, though we most favour Mr. Bickerstaffe, with whom and Mr. Matthews we drank late after office was done at the Sun, discoursing what to do about it tomorrow against Baron, and so home and to bed. Blessed be God all things continue well with and for me. I pray God fit me for a change of my fortune.

I see a sea of hands,
a wine seller in the wine cellar,
a night made even with the sun.
What to do? I pray for
a change of tune.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Friday 31 August 1660.