Old

Up betimes, and my wife’s mind and mine holding for her going, so she to get her ready, and I abroad to do the like for myself, and so home, and after setting every thing at my office and at home in order, by coach to Bishop’s Gate, it being a very promising fair day. There at the Dolphin we met my uncle Thomas and his son-in-law, which seems a very sober man, and Mr. Moore. So Mr. Moore and my wife set out before, and my uncle and I staid for his son Thomas, who, by a sudden resolution, is preparing to go with us, which makes me fear something of mischief which they design to do us. He staying a great while, the old man and I before, and about eight miles off, his son comes after us, and about six miles further we overtake Mr. Moore and my wife, which makes me mightily consider what a great deal of ground is lost in a little time, when it is to be got up again by another, that is to go his own ground and the other’s too; and so after a little bayte (I paying all the reckonings the whole journey) at Ware, to Buntingford, where my wife, by drinking some cold beer, being hot herself, presently after ‘lighting, begins to be sick, and became so pale, and I alone with her in a great chamber there, that I thought she would have died, and so in great horror, and having a great tryall of my true love and passion for her, called the mayds and mistresse of the house, and so with some strong water, and after a little vomit, she came to be pretty well again; and so to bed, and I having put her to bed with great content, I called in my company, and supped in the chamber by her, and being very merry in talk, supped and then parted, and I to bed and lay very well. This day my cozen Thomas dropped his hanger, and it was lost.

old like a gate is old
miles of ground lost to it

reckoning the whole hot present
a trial of little art


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Monday 14 September 1663.

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