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

Volume XXXIV, Number 1

Late Winter 2003

Notes of a Patient-Doctor,
The Big Bang, Topology, and Lunacy, and
How Addison Mizner Invented Florida's Gold Coast

A Poet in American Southwest Deserts and Canyons
"The rabbit toppled,
scrambling to get back up.
When our eyes met,
the rabbit on its side looking up at me,
there was a very brief conversation.
I have you, I said.
I know, the jackrabbit said."

American Standard
"There was always the flowering of nobility
in even the most piteous of them --- an edge of hope
that could make Snopes a character of wonder.
Not so here. All hope is blotted out
with blood, lunatic suicides, and old people
full of the yellow smell of their age."

Moral Hazard
"In Bach, the conscious mind is
busy listening to the soprano, going on
about the divine nature of the divine,
and all the while the unconscious mind is
racing along with the cello and harpsichord.
The pull and push of the two contrary forces
causes a divine push-me-pull-you
within the soul of the listener."

Great Reviews of the Past
Lindbergh: Triumph and Tragedy
"Soon after the kidnapping
he went to work on a book about selective breeding,
forced sterilization, where undesirables,
should be humanely and economically disposed of
in small euthanistic institutions supplied with proper gases."

Paul Zimmer's Troubles,
The Adventures of Philo T. Farnsworth, and
History in English Words

Medical Paraphernalia
I. Behind the Mask
"My father was a doctor, a pediatrician.
He was the kind we all long for today.
Me, too.
When I was little, I was aware of loving him."

II. The Microscope
"I watched the mystery of life swimming by,
as I examined a gob of the goo in my underpants
with the high-power lens. So many little me's ...
or were they just tadpoles?"

III. Lilly and Me
"I always assumed that Eli Lilly was a Jewish pediatrician.
Only when I started school and learned about
Eli Whitney's cotton gin and Elihu Yale's university,
did I learn that he was no more Jewish
than Orville Redenbacher."

"Would she encourage a telephone call
after these fifty years? Would she invite me to come visit
and meet her family? Would she want to talk about
that time so long ago when we were such innocents,
such innocents in love?"

Suicide in the Desert
"I fanned into the land,
rippling across the surface in all directions.
I could smell the ground, its dark volcanic dust
driven into crannies and protected beneath mats of stone.
I felt the shape of every crag. At that moment I realized that
I had fed my life to the land.

Great Readings of the Past
200 Horsepower Cheeses
"What did Tom say about those cheeses?
I replied that he had directed they were
to be kept in a moist place, and that nobody
was to touch them. She said:
Nobody's likely to touch them. Had he smelt them?
I thought he had, and added
that he seemed greatly attached to them.
You think he would be upset, she queried,
if I gave a man a sovereign
to take them away and bury them?"

I Sing of a Maiden
He came al so still/There his mother lay.
As dew in April/That falleth on the spray.
Mother and maiden/Was never none but she;
Well may such a lady/Goddes mother be.

The Solicitor
"Only he knew that, underneath his sober grey
Attire, his shaven legs were clad in sleek,
Expensive hose and black satin panties
Graced his trim behind."

Poetry Magazine's
Who Were You
Before You Were?


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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For our 10th Anniversary,
we'll be issuing a compendium of our
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This is the Preface and Introduction
to the book that will be called
Rock Gardening in the Ukraine

T H E  F A C T S
Submitting Books
The best way to get books to RALPH for review.
Submitting Reviews
Suggestions for would-be reviewers --- and payment schedule.
RALPH didn't spring full-blown from the brows of the gods:
     We've been around (in different guises) for over twenty-five years.     
The Fessenden Fund
Describing the good works of RALPH's official godparent

Lolita Lark, Editor-In-Chief
Post Office Box 16719, San Diego CA 92176

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