the lash of a hard day
without any mirth
an old quarter horse
comes to a standstill in the road
Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Friday 29 September 1665.
when it is now very dark
and I had borrowed and rode hard
and come just about chappell time
I went to the offices
but strung, not to my purpose
and so was forced to promise
without any manner of reason for scruple.
But at last I did, and so left
my tallies there against another day;
mistresse of the house
an old mayde lately married to a company
(and being done)
so to my lodging
and there being a little weary
fell to order some of my pocket papers
to understand it,
of taking profit for (my) money
laid out for these goods,
but I rise in my demand!
and I hear, for certain, this night upon the road.
Hell’s Angel or Heaven’s Devil?
By stealth of night, in the darkest hours, or by sun’s brilliance, The Mistresse Is.
Death? Longing? Desire? Lust? Prowler? Predator? Yearning?
Prayed upon. Called forth. Brought down. Lifted up.
And yet, she is the unnameable on the tongue’s tipping of scales.