Budding scientist

All the morning at home, and Mr. Berkenshaw (whom I have not seen a great while, came to see me), who staid with me a great while talking of musique, and I am resolved to begin to learn of him to compose, and to begin to-morrow, he giving of me so great hopes that I shall soon do it.
Before twelve o’clock comes, by appointment, Mr. Peter and the Dean, and Collonel Honiwood, brothers, to dine with me; but so soon that I was troubled at it. But, however, I entertained them with talk and oysters till one o’clock, and then we sat down to dinner, not staying for my uncle and aunt Wight, at which I was troubled, but they came by and by, and so we dined very merry, at least I seemed so, but the dinner does not please me, and less the Dean and Collonel, whom I found to be pitiful sorry gentlemen, though good-natured, but Mr. Peter above them both, who after dinner did show us the experiment (which I had heard talk of) of the chymicall glasses, which break all to dust by breaking off a little small end; which is a great mystery to me. They being gone, my aunt Wight and my wife and I to cards, she teaching of us how to play at gleeke, which is a pretty game; but I have not my head so free as to be troubled with it. By and by comes my uncle Wight back, and so to supper and talk, and then again to cards, when my wife and I beat them two games and they us one, and so good night and to bed.

I begin to learn
how a good experiment

is a mystery play,
a game I have my head

free to be troubled by.
And I am one.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Monday 13 January 1661/62.

Dave Bonta (bio) crowd-sources his problems by following his gut, which he shares with 100 trillion of his closest microbial friends — a close-knit, symbiotic community comprising several thousand species of bacteria, fungi, and protozoa. In a similarly collaborative fashion, all of Dave’s writing is available for reuse and creative remix under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. For attribution in printed material, his name (Dave Bonta) will suffice, but for web use, please link back to the original. Contact him for permission to waive the “share alike” provision (e.g. for use in a conventionally copyrighted work).

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