Mortality

This morning I made up my accounts, and find myself ‘de claro’ worth about 530l., and no more, so little have I increased it since my last reckoning; but I confess I have laid out much money in clothes.
Upon a suddaine motion I took my wife, and Sarah and Will by water, with some victuals with us, as low as Gravesend, intending to have gone into the Hope to the Royal James, to have seen the ship and Mr. Shepley, but meeting Mr. Shepley in a hoy, bringing up my Lord’s things, she and I went on board, and sailed up with them as far as half-way tree, very glad to see Mr. Shepley. Here we saw a little Turk and a negroe, which are intended for pages to the two young ladies. Many birds and other pretty noveltys there was, but I was afeard of being louzy, and so took boat again, and got to London before them, all the way, coming and going, reading in theWallflower” with great pleasure. So home, and thence to the Wardrobe, where Mr. Shepley was come with the things. Here I staid talking with my Lady, who is preparing to go to-morrow to Hampton Court. So home, and at ten o’clock at night Mr. Shepley came to sup with me. So we had a dish of mackerell and pease, and so he bid us good night, going to lie on board the hoy, and I to bed.

This morning I find myself
laid out in the grave.

I have hope—a far tree intended
for many birds—but I fear

the wall with a talking clock.
It is going to lie.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Friday 30 May 1662.

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