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

Number 110

Very Early Spring 2004

Second Wives,
Ring Lardner on Baseball, and
The Mexican Revolution and Photography

Our Own Devices:
The Past and Future of Body Technology
"Go briefly into the world of simple things,
find out how complex they are:
desks or chairs or shoes or
keyboards or helmets or glasses."

My Big Fat Queer Life
"Much of what Ford trumps up
is obviously something dashed off
to meet a deadline. His style
might be described as
Early Gay Wooden."

Red Gold
"Casson should be, by all rights,
murdered before the end of the book.
But a worthy author can't murder a worthy character,
especially one we have come to have a certain affection for,
n'est çe pas?
How does Furst solve that problem?"

Great Reviews of the Past
Mormon Polygamy: A History
"It is fun
to look back at the wildness
of a sect's early history:
to realize --- no matter how much
they may deny it ---
that the early leaders were
panderers and reprobates and miscreants
(no more nor less than
the rest of us)."

Persepolis and
The Blood Runs Like
A River through My Deams

Bulemia and Anorexia,
Ulysses Grant, Shelby Foote, and
"Ravensbrück Love Poem"

Jaroslav Hasek and
"The Party of Moderate Progress
Within the Bounds of the Law"

Part I

"One of the first precursors of our Party,
Mr. Galileo Galilei,
said as I do:
But, all the same, it goes round.
Miss Bozenka, please serve
one more round."
Part II
"Take for instance
the spa at Piestany,
and its mud.
Even the aristocracy wallows in it
for the good of their health,
yet it probably wouldn't occur to anyone
to call any aristocrat a pig.
Nor is Dr. Kucera,
who recommends this type of cure,
a swine."

At Lolita's Café
Part I
"I take a bite of crunchy pineapple,
and look over, and Squirrel is
chowing down on the head of a crunchy 'hopper,
and I look away, at the huge American
sitting next to me telling me
about his life in Mexico."

Part II
"When they brought me into
the headmaster's study, that dark room,
filled with books, and the smell of pipe-smoke and
leather and solemnity, and said,
'Your father is dead,'
I put my head down on my hands,
closed my eyes --- and had this feeling
sweep over me,
this great feeling of relief."

Part III
"I awoke the next morning,
safely in bed, knowing that not only
did my kind van get me up the hill ---
it then got me into the room,
tucked me in bed, kissed me goodnight,
and locked the door
before tiptoeing away
to the hotel lot
for the night."

The Blow-Job Soldiers
"The blow-job soldiers wallow in snow fields,
Spreading love through the mud-grey lilies;
Hired to fight the beasts who had attacked
Out of the bog, to steal our civilization,
Making hay in the dark with our women,
Bayoneting our babies in utero,
Ghosts of gods, fighting like gods,
Playing with the conscience of the ages."
Spam Poems
The Illicit Anastasia, Jejune Balls,
A Magenta Eardrum

"What we have done is to take the words
in the order in which they arrived in our box,
inserted a few prepositions and indefinite articles,
changed some nouns into verbs and verbs into nouns,
added punctuation and parsing,
and, voila! ---
out come ten poems."


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

Help perpetuate honest, noisy, pesky book reviews.
With your $25 subscription, you get
a free copy of one or more of the titles from
Mho & Mho Works

Be the pride of your neighborhood,
enjoy the envy of your friends.
Assist RALPH with its new, forthcoming book.

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 thirty 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


Visit our Previous Issue   Visit our Present Issue    Visit our Next Issue