Running on emptiness

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(Lord’s day). Up, and with my wife to church, and thither comes Roger Pepys to our pew, and thence home to dinner, whither comes by invitation Mr. Turner, the minister, and my cozen Roger brought with him Jeffrys, the apothecary at Westminster, who is our kinsman, and we had much discourse of Cottenhamshire, and other things with great pleasure. My cozen Roger did tell me of a bargain which I may now have in Norfolke, that my she-cozen, Nan Pepys, is going to sell, the title whereof is very good, and the pennyworth is also good enough; but it is out of the way so of my life, that I shall never enjoy it, nor, it may be, see it, and so I shall have nothing to do with it. After dinner to talk, and I find by discourse Mr. Turner to be a man mighty well read in the Roman history, which is very pleasant. By and by Roger went, and Mr. Turner spent an hour talking over my Lord Sandwich’s condition as to this Parliament, which we fear may be bad, and the condition of his family, which can be no better, and then having little to comfort ourselves but that this humour will not last always in the Parliament, and that [it] may well have a great many more as great men as he enquired into, and so we parted, and I to my chamber, and there busy all the evening, and then my wife and I to supper, and so to bed, with much discourse and pleasure one with another.

my Zen is a thin Zen

a bargain Zen

I have nothing to do with it

I turn over my sandwich

it will not last to supper

Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Sunday 3 November 1667.

Making room

Up, and to the office, where busy all the morning; at noon home, and after dinner my wife and Willett and I to the King’s playhouse, and there saw “Henry the Fourth:” and contrary to expectation, was pleased in nothing more than in Cartwright’s speaking of Falstaffe’s speech about “What is Honour?” The house full of Parliament-men, it being holyday with them: and it was observable how a gentleman of good habit, sitting just before us, eating of some fruit in the midst of the play, did drop down as dead, being choked; but with much ado Orange Moll did thrust her finger down his throat, and brought him to life again. After the play, we home, and I busy at the office late, and then home to supper and to bed.

holiday eating
in the midst of the dead

a finger down his throat
brought him to life again

Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Saturday 2 November 1667.

Oblivion

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Up betimes, and down to the waterside (calling and drinking a dram of the bottle at Michell’s, but saw not Betty), and thence to White Hall and to Sir W. Coventry’s lodging, where he and I alone a good while, where he gives me the full of the Duke of Albemarle’s and Prince’s narratives, given yesterday by the House, wherein they fall foul of him and Sir G. Carteret in something about the dividing of the fleete, and the Prince particularly charging the Commissioners of the Navy with negligence, he says the Commissioners of the Navy whereof Sir W. Coventry is one. He tells me that he is prepared to answer any particular most thoroughly, but the quality of the persons do make it difficult for him, and so I do see is in great pain, poor man, though he deserves better than twenty such as either of them, for his abilities and true service to the King and kingdom. He says there is incoherences, he believes, to be found between their two reports, which will be pretty work to consider. The Duke of Albemarle charges W. Coventry that he should tell him, when he come down to the fleete with Sir G. Carteret, to consult about dividing the fleete, that the Dutch would not be out in six weeks, which W. Coventry says is as false as is possible, and he can prove the contrary by the Duke of Albemarle’s own letters. The Duke of Albemarle says that he did upon sight of the Dutch call a council of officers, and they did conclude they could not avoid fighting the Dutch; and yet we did go to the enemy, and found them at anchor, which is a pretty contradiction. And he tells me that Spragg did the other day say in the House, that the Prince, at his going from the Duke of Albemarle with his fleete, did tell him that if the Dutch should come on, the Duke was to follow him, the Prince, with his fleete, and not fight the Dutch. Out of all this a great deal of good might well be picked. But it is a sad consideration that all this picking of holes in one another’s coats — nay, and the thanks of the House to the Prince and the Duke of Albemarle, and all this envy and design to ruin Sir W. Coventry — did arise from Sir W. Coventry’s unfortunate mistake the other day, in producing of a letter from the Duke of Albemarle, touching the good condition of all things at Chatham just before the Dutch come up, and did us that fatal mischiefe; for upon this they are resolved to undo him, and I pray God they do not. He tells me upon my demanding it that he thinks the King do not like this their bringing these narratives, and that they give out that they would have said more but that the King hath hindered them, that I suppose is about my Lord Sandwich. He is getting a copy of the Narratives, which I shall then have, and so I parted from him and away to White Hall, where I met Mr. Creed and Yeabsly, and discoursed a little about Mr. Yeabsly’s business and accounts, and so I to chapel and there staid, it being All-Hallows day, and heard a fine anthem, made by Pelham (who is come over) in France, of which there was great expectation, and indeed is a very good piece of musique, but still I cannot call the Anthem anything but instrumentall musique with the voice, for nothing is made of the words at all.
I this morning before chapel visited Sir G. Carteret, who is vexed to see how things are likely to go, but cannot help it, and yet seems to think himself mighty safe. I also visited my Lord Hinchingbroke, at his chamber at White Hall, where I found Mr. Turner, Moore, and Creed, talking of my Lord Sandwich, whose case I doubt is but bad, and, I fear, will not escape being worse, though some of the company did say otherwise. But I am mightily pleased with my Lord Hinchingbroke’s sobriety and few words.
After chapel I with Creed to the Exchange, and after much talk he and I there about securing of some money either by land or goods to be always at our command, which we think a thing advisable in this critical time, we parted, and I to the Sun Taverne with Sir W. Warren (with whom I have not drank many a day, having for some time been strange to him), and there did put it to him to advise me how to dispose of my prize, which he will think of and do to my best advantage. We talked of several other things relating to his service, wherein I promise assistance, but coldly, thinking it policy to do so, and so, after eating a short dinner, I away home, and there took out my wife, and she and I alone to the King’s playhouse, and there saw a silly play and an old one, “The Taming of a Shrew,” and so home and I to my office a little, and then home to supper and to bed.

bottle full of yesterday
and incoherence

found between two holes
in a coat

let it undo me
like an anthem with no words

I will exchange the sun
for time alone

Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Friday 1 November 1667.

Bibliophile

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Up, and all the morning at the office, and at noon Mr. Creed and Yeabsly dined with me (my wife gone to dine with Mrs. Pierce and see a play with her), and after dinner in comes Mr. Turner, of Eynsbury, lately come to town, and also after him Captain Hill of the “Coventry,” who lost her at Barbadoes, and is come out of France, where he hath been long prisoner. After a great deal of mixed discourse, and then Mr. Turner and I alone a little in my closet, talking about my Lord Sandwich (who I hear is now ordered by the King to come home again), we all parted, and I by water, calling at Michell’s, and saw and once kissed su wife, but I do think that he is jealous of her, and so she dares not stand out of his sight; so could not do more, but away by water to the Temple, and there, after spending a little time in my bookseller’s shop, I to Westminster; and there at the lobby do hear by Commissioner Pett, to my great amazement, that he is in worse condition than before, by the coming in of the Duke of Albemarle’s and Prince Rupert’s Narratives’ this day; wherein the former do most severely lay matters upon him, so as the House this day have, I think, ordered him to the Tower again, or something like it; so that the poor man is likely to be overthrown, I doubt, right or wrong, so infinite fond they are of any thing the Duke of Albemarle says or writes to them! I did then go down, and there met with Colonel Reames and cozen Roger Pepys; and there they do tell me how the Duke of Albemarle and the Prince have laid blame on a great many, and particularly on our Office in general; and particularly for want of provision, wherein I shall come to be questioned again in that business myself; which do trouble me. But my cozen Pepys and I had much discourse alone: and he do bewail the constitution of this House, and says there is a direct caball and faction, as much as is possible between those for and those against the Chancellor, and so in other factions, that there is nothing almost done honestly and with integrity; only some few, he says, there are, that do keep out of all plots and combinations, and when their time comes will speak and see right done, if possible; and that he himself is looked upon to be a man that will be of no faction, and so they do shun to make him; and I am glad of it. He tells me that he thanks God he never knew what it was to be tempted to be a knave in his life; till he did come into the House of Commons, where there is nothing done but by passion, and faction, and private interest. Reames did tell me of a fellow last night (one Kelsy, a commander of a fire-ship, who complained for want of his money paid him) did say that he did see one of the Commissioners of the Navy bring in three waggon-loads of prize-goods into Greenwich one night; but that the House did take no notice of it, nor enquire; but this is me, and I must expect to be called to account, and answer what I did as well as I can. So thence away home, and in Holborne, going round, it being dark, I espied Sir D. Gawden’s coach, and so went out of mine into his; and there had opportunity to talk of the business of victuals, which the Duke of Albemarle and Prince did complain that they were in want of the last year: but we do conclude we shall be able to show quite the contrary of that; only it troubles me that we must come to contend with these great persons, which will overrun us. So with some disquiet in my mind on this account I home, and there comes Mr. Yeabsly, and he and I to even some accounts, wherein I shall be a gainer about 200l., which is a seasonable profit, for I have got nothing a great while; and he being gone, I to bed.

lost in my books
the maze of narratives

like a vision of another
impossible life

where there is nothing done
but by passion

one fire
one green night

and I must expect to go dark
or be overrun

Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Thursday 31 October 1667.

Subjects

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All the morning till past noon preparing over again our report this afternoon to the Committee of Parliament about tickets, and then home to eat a bit, and then with Sir W. Pen to White Hall, where we did a very little business with the Duke of York at our usual meeting, only I perceive that he do leave all of us, as the King do those about him, to stand and fall by ourselves, and I think is not without some cares himself what the Parliament may do in matters wherein his honour is concerned. Thence to the Parliament-house; where, after the Committee was sat, I was called in; and the first thing was upon the complaint of a dirty slut that was there, about a ticket which she had lost, and had applied herself to me for another. I did give them a short and satisfactory answer to that; and so they sent her away, and were ashamed of their foolery, in giving occasion to 500 seamen and seamen’s wives to come before them, as there was this afternoon. But then they fell to the business of tickets, and I did give them the best answer I could, but had not scope to do it in the methodical manner which I had prepared myself for, but they did ask a great many broken rude questions about it, and were mightily hot whether my Lord Bruncker had any order to discharge whole ships by ticket, and because my answer was with distinction, and not direct, I did perceive they were not so fully satisfied therewith as I could wish they were. So my Lord Bruncker was called in, and they could fasten nothing on him that I could see, nor indeed was there any proper matter for blame, but I do see, and it was said publicly in the House by Sir T. Clerges that Sir W. Batten had designed the business of discharging men by ticket and an order after the thing was done to justify my Lord Bruncker for having done it. But this I did not owne at all, nor was it just so, though he did indeed do something like it, yet had contributed as much to it as any man of the board by sending down of tickets to do it. But, Lord! to see that we should be brought to justify ourselves in a thing of necessity and profit to the King, and of no profit or convenience to us, but the contrary.
We being withdrawn, we heard no more of it, but there staid late and do hear no more, only my cozen Pepys do tell me that he did hear one or two whisper as if they thought that I do bogle at the business of my Lord Bruncker, which is a thing I neither did or have reason to do in his favour, but I do not think it fit to make him suffer for a thing that deserves well. But this do trouble me a little that anything should stick to my prejudice in any of them, and did trouble me so much that all the way home with Sir W. Pen I was not at good ease, nor all night, though when I come home I did find my wife, and Betty Turner, the two Mercers, and Mrs. Parker, an ugly lass, but yet dances well, and speaks the best of them, and W. Batelier, and Pembleton dancing; and here I danced with them, and had a good supper, and as merry as I could be, and so they being gone we to bed.

we fall by ourselves into the dirt

we are as broken as a fast

a rope is a necessity of no profit to us

we hear it whisper dance well

Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Wednesday 30 October 1667.

Grand jury

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Up, and at the office, my Lord Bruncker and I close together till almost 3 after noon, never stirring, making up a report for the Committee this afternoon about the business of discharging men by ticket, which it seems the House is mighty earnest in, but is a foolery in itself, yet gives me a great deal of trouble to draw up a defence for the Board, as if it was a crime; but I think I have done it to very good purpose.
Then to my Lady Williams’s, with her and my Lord, and there did eat a snapp of good victuals, and so to Westminster Hall, where we find the House not up, but sitting all this day about the method of bringing in the charge against my Lord Chancellor; and at last resolved for a Committee to draw up the heads, and so rose, and no Committee to sit tonight.
Here Sir W. Coventry and Lord Bruncker and I did in the Hall (between the two Courts at the top of the Hall) discourse about a letter of W. Coventry’s to Bruncker, whereon Bruncker did justify his discharging men by ticket, and insists on one word which Sir W. Coventry would not seem very earnest to have left out, but I did see him concerned, and did after labour to suppress the whole letter, the thing being in itself really impertinent, but yet so it is that W. Coventry do not desire to have his name used in this business, and I have prevailed with Bruncker for it.
Thence Bruncker and I to the King’s House, thinking to have gone into a box above, for fear of being seen, the King being there, but the play being 3 acts done we would not give 4s., and so away and parted, and I home, and there after a little supper to bed, my eyes ill, and head full of thoughts of the trouble this Parliament gives us.

at the committee on crime
all the raw heads

discharging one word
into a box

Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Tuesday 29 October 1667.

Personal growth

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Up, and by water to White Hall (calling at Michell’s and drank a dram of strong water, but it being early I did not see his wife), and thence walked to Sir W. Coventry’s lodging, but he was gone out, and so going towards St. James’s I find him at his house which is fitting for him; and there I to him, and was with him above an hour alone, discoursing of the matters of the nation, and our Office, and himself. He owns that he is, at this day, the chief person aymed at by the Parliament — that is, by the friends of my Lord Chancellor, and also by the Duke of Albemarle, by reason of his unhappy shewing of the Duke of Albemarle’s letter, the other day, in the House; but that he thinks that he is not liable to any hurt they can fasten on him for anything, he is so well armed to justify himself in every thing, unless in the old business of selling places, when he says every body did; and he will now not be forward to tell his own story, as he hath been; but tells me he is grown wiser, and will put them to prove any thing, and he will defend himself: besides that, he will dispute the statute, thinking that it will not be found to reach him. We did talk many things, which, as they come into my mind now, I shall set down without order: that he is weary of public employment; and neither ever designed, nor will ever, if his commission were brought to him wrapt in gold, would he accept of any single place in the State, as particularly Secretary of State; which, he says, the world discourses Morrice is willing to resign, and he thinks the King might have thought of him, but he would not, by any means, now take it, if given him, nor anything, but in commission with others, who may bear part of the blame; for now he observes waloneell, that whoever did do anything singly are now in danger, however honest and painful they were, saying that he himself was the only man, he thinks, at the council-board that spoke his mind clearly, as he thought, to the good of the King; and the rest, who sat silent, have nothing said to them, nor are taken notice of. That the first time the King did take him so closely into his confidence and ministry of affairs was upon the business of Chatham, when all the disturbances were there, and in the kingdom; and then, while everybody was fancying for himself, the King did find him to persuade him to call for the Parliament, declaring that it was against his own proper interest, forasmuch as [it was] likely they would find faults with him, as well as with others, but that he would prefer the service of the King before his own: and, thereupon, the King did take him into his special notice, and, from that time to this, hath received him so; and that then he did see the folly and mistakes of the Chancellor in the management of things, and saw that matters were never likely to be done well in that sort of conduct, and did persuade the King to think fit of the taking away the seals from the Chancellor, which, when it was done, he told me that he himself, in his own particular, was sorry for it; for, while he stood, there was he and my Lord Arlington to stand between him and harm: whereas now there is only my Lord Arlington, and he is now down, so that all their fury is placed upon him but that he did tell the King, when he first moved it, that, if he thought the laying of him, W. Coventry, aside, would at all facilitate the removing of the Chancellor, he would most willingly submit to it, whereupon the King did command him to try the Duke of York about it, and persuade him to it, which he did, by the King’s command, undertake, and compass, and the Duke of York did own his consent to the King, but afterwards was brought to be of another mind for the Chancellor, and now is displeased with him, and [so is] the Duchesse, so that she will not see him; but he tells me the Duke of York seems pretty kind, and hath said that he do believe that W. Coventry did mean well, and do it only out of judgment. He tells me that he never was an intriguer in his life, nor will be, nor of any combination of persons to set up this, or fling down that, nor hath, in his own business, this Parliament, spoke to three members to say any thing for him, but will stand upon his own defence, and will stay by it, and thinks that he is armed against all they can [say], but the old business of selling places, and in that thinks they cannot hurt him. However, I do find him mighty willing to have his name used as little as he can, and he was glad when I did deliver him up a letter of his to me, which did give countenance to the discharging of men by ticket at Chatham, which is now coming in question; and wherein, I confess, I am sorry to find him so tender of appearing, it being a thing not only good and fit, all that was done in it, but promoted and advised by him. But he thinks the House is set upon wresting anything to his prejudice that they can pick up. He tells me he did never, as a great many have, call the Chancellor rogue and knave, and I know not what; but all that he hath said, and will stand by, is, that his counsels were not good, nor the manner of his managing of things. I suppose he means suffering the King to run in debt; for by and by the King walking in the parke, with a great crowd of his idle people about him, I took occasion to say that it was a sorry thing to be a poor King, and to have others to come to correct the faults of his own servants, and that this was it that brought us all into this condition. He answered that he would never be a poor King, and then the other would mend of itself. “No,” says he, “I would eat bread and drink water first, and this day discharge all the idle company about me, and walk only with two footmen; and this I have told the King, and this must do it at last.” I asked him how long the King would suffer this. He told me the King must suffer it yet longer, that he would not advise the King to do otherwise; for it would break out again worse, if he should break them up before the core be come up.
After this, we fell to other talk, of my waiting upon him hereafter, it may be, to read a chapter in Seneca, in this new house, which he hath bought, and is making very fine, when we may be out of employment, which he seems to wish more than to fear, and I do believe him heartily.
Thence home, and met news from Mr. Townsend of the Wardrobe that old Young, the yeoman taylor, whose place my Lord Sandwich promised my father, is dead. Upon which, resolving presently that my father shall not be troubled with it, but I hope I shall be able to enable him to end his days where he is, in quiet, I went forth thinking to tell Mrs. Ferrers (Captain Ferrers’s wife), who do expect it after my father, that she may look after it, but upon second thoughts forbore it, and so back again home, calling at the New Exchange, and there buying “The Indian Emperour,” newly printed, and so home to dinner, where I had Mr. Clerke, the sollicitor, and one of the Auditor’s clerks to discourse about the form of making up my accounts for the Exchequer, which did give me good satisfaction, and so after dinner, my wife, and Mercer, who grows fat, and Willett, and I, to the King’s house, and there saw “The Committee,” a play I like well, and so at night home and to the office, and so to my chamber about my accounts, and then to Sir W. Pen’s to speak with Sir John Chichly, who desired my advice about a prize which he hath begged of the King, and there had a great deal of his foolish talk of ladies and love and I know not what, and so home to supper and to bed.

an hour alone
is a wing I can fasten
any place in the world

and I might be the only man
at a silent disturbance
against his own interest

a take that is a mistake
taking away the chance
to undertake it

I believe we live
to question not to suffer
or correct faults

a bread and heart sandwich
so we grow fat
with love

Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Monday 28 October 1667.

Memory loss

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(Lord’s day). Up, and to my office, there, with W. Hewer, to dictate a long letter to the Duke of York, about the bad state of the office, it being a work I do think fit for the office to do, though it be to no purpose but for their vindication in these bad times; for I do now learn many things tending to our safety which I did not wholly forget before, but do find the fruits of, and would I had practised them more, as, among other things, to be sure to let our answers to orders bear date presently after their date, that we may be found quick in our execution. This did us great good the other day before the Parliament.
All the morning at this, at noon home to dinner, with my own family alone. After dinner, I down to Deptford, the first time that I went to look upon “The Maybolt,” which the King hath given me, and there she is; and I did meet with Mr. Uthwayte, who do tell me that there are new sails ordered to be delivered her, and a cable, which I did not speak of at all to him. So, thereupon, I told him I would not be my own hindrance so much as to take her into my custody before she had them, which was all I said to him, but desired him to take a strict inventory of her, that I might not be cheated by the master nor the company, when they come to understand that the vessel is gone away, which he hath promised me, and so away back again home, reading all the way the book of the collection of oaths in the several offices of this nation, which is worth a man’s reading, and so away home, and there my boy and I to sing, and at it all the evening, and to supper, and so to bed.
This evening come Sir J. Minnes to me, to let me know that a Parliament-man hath been with him, to tell him that the Parliament intend to examine him particularly about Sir W. Coventry’s selling of places, and about my Lord Bruncker’s discharging the ships at Chatham by ticket: for the former of which I am more particularly sorry that that business of W. Coventry should come up again; though this old man tells me, and, I believe, that he can say nothing to it.

I now learn many things
which I forget

the fruit we bear
after our execution

I take a red inventory
of oaths and places

though this old man tells me
believe nothing

Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Sunday 27 October 1667.

Harbinger

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Up, and we met all this morning at Sir W. Pen’s roome, the office being fowle with the altering of our garden door. There very busy, and at noon home, where Mrs. Pierce and her daughter, husband and Mrs. Corbet dined with me. I had a good dinner for them, and mighty merry. Pierce and I very glad at the fate of the officers of Ordnance, that they are like to have so much blame on them. Here Mrs. Pierce tells me that the two Marshalls at the King’s house are Stephen Marshall’s, the great Presbyterian’s daughters: and that Nelly and Beck Marshall, falling out the other day, the latter called the other my Lord Buckhurst’s whore. Nell answered then, “I was but one man’s whore, though I was brought up in a bawdy-house to fill strong waters to the guests; and you are a whore to three or four, though a Presbyter’s praying daughter!” which was very pretty. Mrs. Pierce is still very pretty, but paints red on her face, which makes me hate her, that I thank God I take no pleasure in her at all more. After much mirth and good company at dinner, I to the office and left them, and Pendleton also, who come in to see my wife and talk of dancing, and there I at the office all the afternoon very busy, and did much business, with my great content to see it go off of hand, and so home, my eyes spent, to supper and to bed.

an owl altering our fate
like Mars
her red face after dancing
my great eyes

Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Saturday 26 October 1667.

Respite

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Up, and all the morning close till two o’clock, till I had not time to eat my dinner, to make our answer ready for the Parliament this afternoon, to shew how Commissioner Pett was singly concerned in the executing of all orders from Chatham, and that we did properly lodge all orders with him. Thence with Sir W. Pen to the Parliament Committee, and there we all met, and did shew, my Lord Bruncker and I, our commissions under the Great Seal in behalf of all the rest, to shew them our duties, and there I had no more matters asked me, but were bid to withdraw, and did there wait, I all the afternoon till eight at night, while they were examining several about the business of Chatham again, and particularly my Lord Bruncker did meet with two or three blurs that he did not think of. One from Spragg, who says that “The Unity” was ordered up contrary to his order, by my Lord Bruncker and Commissioner Pett. Another by Crispin, the waterman, who said he was upon “The Charles;” and spoke to Lord Bruncker coming by in his boat, to know whether they should carry up “The Charles,” they being a great many naked men without armes, and he told them she was well as she was. Both these have little in them indeed, but yet both did stick close against him; and he is the weakest man in the world to make his defence, and so is like to have much fault laid on him therefrom. Spragg was in with them all the afternoon, and hath much fault laid on him for a man that minded his pleasure, and little else of his whole charge. I walked in the lobby, and there do hear from Mr. Chichly that they were (the Commissioners of the Ordnance) shrewdly put to it yesterday, being examined with all severity and were hardly used by them, much otherwise than we, and did go away with mighty blame; and I am told by every body that it is likely to stick mighty hard upon them: at which every body is glad, because of Duncomb’s pride, and their expecting to have the thanks of the House whereas they have deserved, as the Parliament apprehends, as bad as bad can be.
Here is great talk of an impeachment brought in against my Lord Mordaunt, and that another will be brought in against my Lord Chancellor in a few days.
Here I understand for certain that they have ordered that my Lord Arlington’s letters, and Secretary Morrice’s letters of intelligence, be consulted, about the business of the Dutch fleete’s coming abroad, which is a very high point, but this they have done, but in what particular manner I cannot justly say, whether it was not with the King’s leave first asked.
Here late, as I have said, and at last they broke up, and we had our commissions again, and I do hear how Birch is the high man that do examine and trouble every body with his questions, and they say that he do labour all he can to clear Pett, but it seems a witness has come in tonight, C. Millett, who do declare that he did deliver a message from the Duke of Albemarle time enough for him to carry up “The Charles,” and he neglected it, which will stick very hard, it seems, on him.
So Sir W. Pen and I in his coach home, and there to supper, a good supper, and so weary, and my eyes spent, to bed.

the clock had no time
to answer to
under the sea
naked as the hole in an ear

I am old like that
high up in a birch
the questions are enough
to carry home

Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Friday 25 October 1667.