Night-lover

Up, and am invited betimes to be godfather tomorrow to Captain Poole’s child with my Lady Pen and Lady Batten, which I accepted out of complaisance to them, and so to the office, where we sat all the morning. At noon dined at home, and then my wife and I, with Sir W. Pen, to the New Exchange, set her down, and he and I to St. James’s, where Sir J. Minnes, [Sir] W. Batten, and we waited upon the Duke of York, but did little business, and he, I perceive, his head full of other business, and of late hath not been very ready to be troubled with any of our business. Having done with him, Sir J. Minnes, [Sir] W. Batten and I to White Hall, and there hear how it is like to go well enough with my Lord Chancellor; that he is like to keep his Seal, desiring that he may stand his trial in Parliament, if they will accuse him of any thing. Here Sir J. Minnes and I looking upon the pictures; and Mr. Chevins, being by, did take us, of his own accord, into the King’s closet, to shew us some pictures, which, indeed, is a very noble place, and exceeding great variety of brave pictures, and the best hands. I could have spent three or four hours there well, and we had great liberty to look and Chevins seemed to take pleasure to shew us, and commend the pictures.
Having done here, I to the Exchange, and there find my wife gone with Sir W. Pen. So I to visit Colonel Fitzgerald, who hath been long sick at Woolwich, where most of the officers and soldiers quartered there, since the Dutch being in the river, have died or been sick, and he among the rest; and, by the growth of his beard and gray [hairs], I did not know him. His desire to speak with me was about the late command for my paying no more pensions for Tangier.
Thence home, and there did business, and so in the evening home to supper and to bed. This day Mr. Pierce, the surgeon, was with me; and tells me how this business of my Lord Chancellor’s was certainly designed in my Lady Castlemayne’s chamber; and that, when he went from the King on Monday morning, she was in bed, though about twelve o’clock, and ran out in her smock into her aviary looking into White Hall garden; and thither her woman brought her her nightgown; and stood joying herself at the old man’s going away: and several of the gallants of White Hall, of which there were many staying to see the Chancellor return, did talk to her in her birdcage; among others, Blancford, telling her she was the bird of paradise.

am I to father a child
with my lady pen

head full of trouble
and pictures
pictures pictures

sick at the river
of gray business

I go out into the night
and talk to her
in her cage

telling her she was
the bird of paradise

Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Tuesday 27 August 1667.

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