The Bridge Diner
“They were talking about old days and old ways and all the changes that have come on London in the last weary years; a little party of three of them, gathered for a rare meeting in Perrott’s rooms.
One man, the youngest of the three, a lad of fifty-five or so, had began to say:
“I know every inch of that neighborhood, and I tell you there is no such place.”
From “N”, by Arthur Machen (1863-1947), collected in “Machen’s Tales of Horror and the Supernatural”.
My favorite Arthur Machen story, the enigmatically named “N” describes an otherworldly portion of
H.P. Lovecraft would draw more than a little influence from his stories.
What I like most about “N” is the notion of a hidden city, just outside common view. I have pictured such a place, perhaps on
Yesterday afternoon, after a week in
Soaked to the skin, I ran under the overhang of McCormick Piers parking structure, where I took small advantage against the rain. Then, under the
With an incongruity that Arthur Machen would appreciate, even though I had passed by there hundreds of times, I had never seen it before.
The Bridge Diner, unchanged after years of feeding workers from the Albers Mill and the Ainsworth docks, as well as porters and conductors off duty from nearby Union Station, with its menu of steaks, chops, seafood and breakfast. It has survived more than a few
Except it never was.
Like Dorothy’s house atop the Wicked Witch of the East, the Bridge Diner has appeared, apparently out of nowhere.
I returned there today with a camera. The fact that it could be photographed does not bode well for a Machenian explanation which leads me to a more cinematic theory.
Still, with so much of
Next week, a larger post…