Forest People

Up; and with my own coach as far as the Temple, and thence sent it to my cozen Turner, who, to ease her own horses, that are going with her out of town, do borrow mine to-day. So I to Auditor Woods, and there to meet, and met my Lord Bellassis upon some business of his accounts, and having done that did thence go to St. James’s, and attended the Duke of York a little, being the first time of my waiting on him at St. James’s this summer, whither he is now newly gone and thence walked to White Hall; and so, by and by, to the Council-Chamber, and heard a remarkable cause pleaded between the Farmers of the Excise of Wiltshire, in complaint against the justices of Peace of Salisbury: and Sir H. Finch was for the former. But, Lord! to see how he did with his admirable eloquence order the matter, is not to be conceived almost: so pleasant a thing it is to hear him plead. Then at noon by coach home, and thither by and by comes cozen Turner, and The., and Joyce, in their riding-clod: they being come from their lodgings to her husbands chamber, at the Temple, and there do lie, and purpose to go out of town on Friday next; and here I had a good dinner for them. After dinner by water to White Hall, where the Duke of York did meet our Office, and went with us to the Lords Commissioners of the Treasury; and there we did go over all the business of the state I had drawn up, of this year’s action and expence, which I did do to their satisfaction, and convincing them of the necessity of providing more money, if possible, for us. Thence the Duke of York being gone, I did there stay walking with Sir H. Cholmly in the Court, talking of news; where he told me, that now the great design of the Duke of Buckingham is to prevent the meeting, since he cannot bring about with the King the dissolving, of this Parliament, that the King may not need it; and therefore my Lord St. Albans is hourly expected with great offers of a million of money, to buy our breach with the Dutch: and this, they do think, may tempt the King to take the money, and thereby be out of a necessity of calling the Parliament again, which these people dare not suffer to meet again: but this he doubts, and so do I, that it will be to the ruin of the nation if we fall out with Holland. This we were discoursing when my boy comes to tell me that his mistress was at the Gate with the coach, whither I went, and there find my wife and the whole company. So she, and Mrs. Turner, and The., and Talbot, in mine: and Joyce, W. Batelier, and I, in a hackney, to Hyde Park, where I was ashamed to be seen; but mightily pleased, though troubled, with a drunken coachman that did not remember when we come to ’light, where it was that he took us up; but said at Hammersmith, and thither he was carrying of us when we come first out of the Park. So I carried them all to Hercules-Pillars, and there did treat them: and so, about ten at night, parted, and my wife, and I, and W. Batelier, home; and he gone, we to bed.

who are woods to us
the summer is gone
to the farmers

I bury a finch
with eloquence
clod that I am

these people suffer ruin
and sing with joy
drunken pillars

Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Wednesday 21 April 1669.

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