Funeral procession

Up betimes and to my business of settling my house and papers, and then abroad and met with Hadley, our clerke, who, upon my asking how the plague goes, he told me it encreases much, and much in our parish; for, says he, there died nine this week, though I have returned but six: which is a very ill practice, and makes me think it is so in other places; and therefore the plague much greater than people take it to be.
Thence, as I intended, to Sir R. Viner’s, and there found not Mr. Lewes ready for me, so I went forth and walked towards Moorefields to see (God forbid my presumption!) whether I could see any dead corps going to the grave; but, as God would have it, did not. But, Lord! how every body’s looks, and discourse in the street is of death, and nothing else, and few people going up and down, that the towne is like a place distressed and forsaken. After one turne there back to Viner’s, and there found my business ready for me, and evened all reckonings with them to this day to my great content. So home, and all day till very late at night setting my Tangier and private accounts in order, which I did in both, and in the latter to my great joy do find myself yet in the much best condition that ever I was in, finding myself worth 2180l. and odd, besides plate and goods, which I value at 250l. more, which is a very great blessing to me. The Lord make me thankfull! and of this at this day above 1800l. in cash in my house, which speaks but little out of my hands in desperate condition, but this is very troublesome to have in my house at this time.
So late to bed, well pleased with my accounts, but weary of being so long at them.

a corpse going to the grave
how everybody looks

going up and down
like a tress or vine

into the ash of hands
so weary so long


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Wednesday 30 August 1665.

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