Contemplative

Up, and being ready, to the Cockpitt to make a visit to the Duke of Albemarle, and to my great joy find him the same man to me that [he has been] heretofore, which I was in great doubt of, through my negligence in not visiting of him a great while; and having now set all to rights there, I am in mighty ease in my mind and I think shall never suffer matters to run so far backward again as I have done of late, with reference to my neglecting him and Sir W. Coventry.
Thence by water down to Deptford, where I met my Lord Bruncker and Sir W. Batten by agreement, and to measuring Mr. Castle’s new third-rate ship, which is to be called the Defyance. And here I had my end in saving the King some money and getting myself some experience in knowing how they do measure ships. Thence I left them and walked to Redriffe, and there taking water was overtaken by them in their boat, and so they would have me in with them to Castle’s house, where my Lady Batten and Madam Williams were, and there dined and a deale of doings. I had a good dinner and counterfeit mirthe and pleasure with them, but had but little, thinking how I neglected my business. Anon, all home to Sir W. Batten’s and there Mrs. Knipp coming we did spend the evening together very merry. She and I singing, and, God forgive me! I do still see that my nature is not to be quite conquered, but will esteem pleasure above all things, though yet in the middle of it, it has reluctances after my business, which is neglected by my following my pleasure. However musique and women I cannot but give way to, whatever my business is. They being gone I to the office a while and so home to supper and to bed.

in a pit I sit and think
backward as water

how they measure and take
a counterfeit pleasure

how all nature
is not quite conquered yet

how music and women
give us being


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Friday 9 March 1666.

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