Interpreter

Up, and in dressing myself in my dressing chamber comes up Nell, and I did play with her and touch her belly and thing, but did not kiss her. So being ready I to White Hall by water, and there to the Lords Treasurers’ chamber, and there wait, and here it is every body’s discourse that the Parliament is ordered to meet the 25th of July, being, as they say, St. James’s day; which every creature is glad of. But it is pretty to consider how, walking to the Old Swan from my house, I met Sir Thomas Harvy, whom, asking the newes of the Parliament’s meeting, he told me it was true, and they would certainly make a great rout among us. I answered, I did not care for my part, though I was ruined, so that the Commonwealth might escape ruin by it. He answered, that is a good one, in faith; for you know yourself to be secure, in being necessary to the office; but for my part, says he, I must look to be removed; but then, says he, I doubt not but I shall have amends made me; for all the world knows upon what terms I come in; which is a saying that a wise man would not unnecessarily have said, I think, to any body, meaning his buying his place of my Lord Barkely. So we parted, and I to White Hall, as I said before, and there met with Sir Stephen Fox and Mr. Scawen, who both confirm the news of the Parliament’s meeting. Here I staid for an order for my Tangier money, 30,000l., upon the 11 months’ tax, and so away to my Lord Arlington’s office, and there spoke to him about Mr. Lanyon’s business, and received a good answer, and thence to Westminster Hall and there walked a little, and there met with Colonell Reames, who tells me of a letter come last night, or the day before, from my Lord St. Albans, out of France, wherein he says, that the King of France did lately fall out with him, giving him ill names, saying that he had belied him to our King, by saying that he had promised to assist our King, and to forward the peace; saying that indeed he had offered to forward the peace at such a time, but it was not accepted of, and so he thinks himself not obliged, and would do what was fit for him; and so made him to go out of his sight in great displeasure: and he hath given this account to the King, which, Colonell Reymes tells me, puts them into new melancholy at Court, and he believes hath forwarded the resolution of calling the Parliament. Wherewith for all this I am very well contented, and so parted and to the Exchequer, but Mr. Burgess was not in his office; so alone to the Swan, and thither come Mr. Kinaston to me, and he and I into a room and there drank and discoursed, and I am mightily pleased with him for a most diligent and methodical man in all his business. By and by to Burgess, and did as much as we could with him about our Tangier order, though we met with unexpected delays in it, but such as are not to be avoided by reason of the form of the Act and the disorders which the King’s necessities do put upon it, and therefore away by coach, and at White Hall spied Mr. Povy, who tells me, as a great secret, which none knows but himself, that Sir G. Carteret hath parted with his place of Treasurer of the Navy, by consent, to my Lord Anglesey, and is to be Treasurer of Ireland in his stead; but upon what terms it is I know not, but Mr. Povy tells it is so, and that it is in his power to bring me to as great a friendship and confidence in my Lord Anglesey as ever I was with [Sir] W. Coventry, which I am glad of, and so parted, and I to my tailor’s about turning my old silk suit and cloak into a suit and vest, and thence with Mr. Kinaston (whom I had set down in the Strand and took up again at the Temple gate) home, and there to dinner, mightily pleased with my wife’s playing on the flageolet, and so after dinner to the office. Such is the want already of coals, and the despair of having any supply, by reason of the enemy’s being abroad, and no fleete of ours to secure, that they are come, as Mr. Kinaston tells me, at this day to 5l. 10s. per chaldron. All the afternoon busy at the office. In the evening with my wife and Mercer took coach and to Islington to the Old House, and there eat and drank and sang with great pleasure, and then round by Hackney home with great pleasure, and when come home to bed, my stomach not being well pleased with the cream we had to-night.

I read the body’s discourse
in every creature

though a wise man would not unnecessarily
bark or caw

I answer the melancholy
call of a swan

the void turning into despair
in my stomach


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Wednesday 26 June 1667.

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