“East India Brick Row, The“
- Poem (48 lines in quatrains); written early to mid-December 1929. First published in the Providence Journal(January 8, 1930).The poem was written in a futile attempt to prevent the destruction of early nineteenth-century warehouses on South Water Street in Providence, which HPL admired for their humble beauty but which had become so decrepit that it would have been difficult to restore them. HPL notes (letter to August Derleth, [January 1930]; ms., SHSW) that the poem received such a favorable response from readers in the newspaper that he received a cordial letter from the editor about it.See Joseph Payne Brennan, “Lovecraft’s ‘Brick Row,’” MacabreNo. 5 (Summer 1959): 21–22. Eddy, Clifford M[artin], Jr. (1896–1971).Author and correspondent of HPL. A native of Providence, R I., Eddy was a precocious reader and writer, interested in mythology and the occult. His first published tale, “Sign of the Dragon” ( Mystery Magazine,1919), was a detective story. Various tales of mystery, ghosts, and song-writing (he himself later wrote songs, including “When We Met by the Blue Lagoon” and “In My Wonderful Temple of Love”) continued to appear through 1922 in various magazines. He came in touch with HPL in 1923 (see letter to Frank Belknap Long, October 7, 1923 [ SL1.254], where HPL refers to Eddy as “the new Providence amateur”). (His wife Muriel in The Gentleman from Angell Street claims that they had met HPL and his mother as early as 1918, but this seems to be a fabrication.) HPL frequently visited the Eddys’ home in East Providence. Eddy and HPL took scenic walks, one to the Old Stone Mill in Newport, R.I. (August Derleth later incorporated notes taken by HPL on this occasion into The Lurker at the Threshold ), another to Dark Swamp (see SL1.264–67). Though they never found the swamp, the legendry surrounding the place seems to have influenced the opening of “The Colour out of Space” (1927); in 1967 Eddy began an unfinished fictionalized account of the trip entitled “Black Noon” (published in Exit into Eternity). HPL revised four stories for Eddy: “Ashes” ( WT,March 1924), “The Ghost-Eater” ( WT,April 1924), “The Loved Dead” ( WT,May–June–July 1924), and “Deaf, Dumb, and Blind” ( WT,April 1925). The two collaborated on The Cancer of Superstition, ghost written for Harry Houdini, but the escape artist’s death in October 1926 curtailed the project. (Notes and surviving fragments were published in DB.)See Eddy’s collections Exit to Eternity (Oxford Press, 1973), Erased from Exile (Stygian Isle Press, 1976), and The Terror out of Time (Dyer-Eddy, 1976). He wrote a brief memoir, “Walks with H.P.Lovecraft” (in DB).See George Popkins, “He Wrote of the Supernatural,” Providence Evening Bulletin (November 25, 1963): 37.
An H.P.Lovecraft encyclopedia. S.T. Joshi, David E. Schultz.
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