Deacon

(Lord’s day). Up, and to church, myself and wife, where the old dunce Meriton, brother to the known Meriton; of St. Martin’s, Westminster, did make a very good sermon, beyond my expectation. Home to dinner, and we carried in Pegg Pen, and there also come to us little Michell and his wife, and dined very pleasantly. Anon to church, my wife and I and Betty Michell, her husband being gone to Westminster. Here at church (God forgive me), my mind did courir upon Betty Michell, so that I do hazer con mi cosa in la eglisa meme. After church home, and I to my chamber, and there did finish the putting time to my song of “It is decreed,” and do please myself at last and think it will be thought a good song. By and by little Michell comes and takes away his wife home, and my wife and brother and I to my uncle Wight’s, where my aunt is grown so ugly and their entertainment so bad that I am in pain to be there; nor will go thither again a good while, if sent for, for we were sent for to-night, we had not gone else. Wooly’s wife, a silly woman, and not very handsome, but no spirit in her at all; and their discourse mean, and the fear of the troubles of the times hath made them not to bring their plate to town, since it was carried out upon the business of the fire, so that they drink in earth and a wooden can, which I do not like. So home, and my people to bed. I late to finish my song, and then to bed also, and the business of the firing of the city, and the fears we have of new troubles and violences, and the fear of fire among ourselves, did keep me awake a good while, considering the sad condition I and my family should be in. So at last to sleep.

brother to the known God
mind a haze of creed and ease

I grow ugly
in pain for some spirit
to drink

and wooden like the ears
we have in sleep


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Sunday 11 November 1666.

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