R  A  L  P H
  The Review of Arts, Literature, Philosophy and the Humanities

Volume XXXII, Number 1

Late Fall 2002

The Boxer by Jurek Becker,
Studio Case Furniture, and
The One Who Swears You Can't Start Over

Pied Piper :
The Many Lives of Noah Greenberg
"I have loved the sound
of those Renaissance wind instrument
since I first heard them on New York Pro Musica recordings.
A few years ago, I finally took up one of them myself ---
actually a rauschpfeife, which is a straight krummhorn.
To hear me play it is to know why the instrument went extinct."

Creatures of the Deep
"One time I went to a Korean restaurant
located in an old gas station and
they served me boiled sea cucumber
from the deep and
it tasted just like old gas and refried sand."

Voices in the Dark:
Esoteric, Occult & Secular Voices in
Nazi-Occupied Paris 1940 - 44

Part I
"Questioner: Can I ask a question?
Gurdjieff: Why do you make a fly from an elephant?
If you have a question, ask it.
It is my specialty to talk, talk, talk.
Help me to stop my machine from talking.
Ask your question."

Part II
"Hundred of thousands of men assassinated at dawn,
the terrible walls of prisons,
the soil of Europe reeking with millions of corpses
of its sons --- it took all that
to pay for the acquisition of two or three slight distinctions
which may have no other value than to help
some of us to die more nobly."

Great Reviews of the Past
Gangrene and Glory
"Certainly no President, Senator, or U. S. Representative
would volunteer for service in the field,
ducking bullets, missiles and anthrax bombs.
They much prefer to watch the war they declared
from the safety of their living rooms,
making for what Michael Arlen called a
Living Room War."

Lama Zopa Rinpoche,
Hurricane Mitch and the Loss of the "Fantome," and
Groundwater Pumping and
The Fate of America's Fresh Waters

Disability Rights in Russia
Part I
"Airlines and buses refused me passage.
Restaurants didn't want to seat me
because, they said, I would scare away
their customers. I was kicked out of an art gallery
for fear that people looking at the pictures
might back into me and hurt themselves."
Part II

"Disabled people contravene all the values of
youth, virility, activity and physical beauty that Americans cherish.
We are visible reminders to the able-bodied
that the society they live in is
a counterfeit paradise."

Martinis, Chocolate, and Tangerines

"Almost every person
has something secret he likes to eat.
He is downright furtive about it usually,
or mentions it only in a kind of conscious self-amusement,
as one who admits too quickly,
It is rather strange, yes --- and I'll laugh with you."

Icepick Lover
"I had the feeling of unreality
when I killed him, as though I were
spectator and a participant in a horror movie.
After that I became a skilled executioner.
I suppose some might call me an assassin,
but I never thought of myself in that role."

Literary Agents and the TLS
"One agent, regretting that she had a very full list,
invited him to a conference to listen to her speak,
but cautioned: Listening to me lecture is not enough.
She added a riddle for Mr Amantea to ponder:
I really need to have time on a one-on-one with you
to have actually asked for your manuscript."

Cold Collation
"We know ice tea
to induce quickies
so we squeeze green lemons
like cruelty,
discard white and yellow pips
like disdain..."

Un Verano de Tigres
"In the depths of the heart we are together,
In the canebrakes of the heart we range
through a summer of tigers,
stalking a meter of cold skin..."

Great Poems from the Past
Love and the Flowers
"There is a worm in your flower darling
And your mind like mine
Is growing tattered
And the flakes of night come drifting down
And I do love your old bones too dearly."

Holly A. Smith
Disability & Russia, and
The Whaleship Essex


A complete list of all books reviewed in RALPH,
arranged by title, including author, subject, and publisher,
plus a listing of all readings, articles and poems
that have appeared since 1994.

of our most notorious reviews
as collected in the hard-copy

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