Drunkard’s joy

(Christmas day). Lay pretty long in bed, and then rose, leaving my wife desirous to sleep, having sat up till four this morning seeing her mayds make mince-pies. I to church, where our parson Mills made a good sermon. Then home, and dined well on some good ribbs of beef roasted and mince pies; only my wife, brother, and Barker, and plenty of good wine of my owne, and my heart full of true joy; and thanks to God Almighty for the goodness of my condition at this day. After dinner, I begun to teach my wife and Barker my song, “It is decreed,” which pleases me mightily as now I have Mr. Hinxton’s base. Then out and walked alone on foot to the Temple, it being a fine frost, thinking to have seen a play all alone; but there, missing of any bills, concluded there was none, and so back home; and there with my brother reducing the names of all my books to an alphabet, which kept us till 7 or 8 at night, and then to supper, W. Hewer with us, and pretty merry, and then to my chamber to enter this day’s journal only, and then to bed. My head a little thoughtfull how to behave myself in the business of the victualling, which I think will be prudence to offer my service in doing something in passing the pursers’ accounts, thereby to serve the King, get honour to myself, and confirm me in my place in the victualling, which at present yields not work enough to deserve my wages.

I sleep on the ribs of my wife
and plenty of wine

heart full of my bark
reducing all my books to this
day’s ink


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Tuesday 25 December 1666.

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