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

Number 131

Early Summer 2005

Our Editors
have come up with a
Bouquet of Old Friends:
favorite reviews, articles, readings
and poems from ancient issues of RALPH

Winston Churchill
"Lloyd George said that Churchill
would make a drum out of
the skin of his own mother to sound
his own praises."

"These machines ---which had always
terrorized them in small ways by crashing,
hanging, demanding meaningless upgrades
or simply scolding them in the persona
of an annoying paper clip ---
were now revealed to harbor
something more sinister,
something with an agenda."

A Long Long Way
"It's a long way to Tipperary,
It's a long way to go.
It's a long way to Tipperary
To the sweetest girl I know!
Goodbye Piccadilly,
Farewell Leicester Square,
It's a long long way to Tipperary,
But my heart's right there."

High Noon in the Cold War
"The Joint Chiefs of Staff
wanted to hit all Soviet and Cuban planes,
airfields, guns, and nuclear storage sites,
then erect a naval blockade to prevent
new weapon deliveries and finish
the job with a full-scale invasion."

Great Reviews of the Past
The Clock of the Long Now
"I would like to propose
a large (think Stonehenge) mechanical clock,
powered by seasonal temperature changes.
It ticks once a year,
bongs once a century,
and the cuckoo comes out every millennium."

Tar and Feathers
Chicano Sketches

Victor Suárez vs. Mario Suárez

Tibetan Buddhism
World War One

"The Galant'Uomo clan
managed a comfortable living
from our flock of goats,
our vineyard, and our orchard
of spaghetti trees, with a little numbers-
running on the side for spare cash."

An Interview with S. J. Perelman
Part One
Q: "How many drafts of a story do you do?"
A: "Thirty-seven. I once tried doing
thirty-three, but something was lacking,
a certain --- how shall I say? --- je ne sais quoi.
On another occasion, I tried forty-two versions,
but the final effect was too lapidary ---
you know what I mean, Jack?"
Part Two
"The closest analogy
I can draw to describe Hollywood
is that it strikingly resembled the Sargasso Sea ---
an immense, turgidly revolving
whirlpool in which literary hulks
encrusted with verdigris moldered
until they sank."

Conducting a War from the Bedroom
"Work went on everywhere,
in his study, in the dining-room,
in his bedroom. One might find oneself
unexpectedly sitting in the family circle or
sharing a meal while one took
his orders."

Edition 69
Jindrich Strysky
"Old age likes to coddle time.
Morality sleeps soundly
only in pleasure's embrace.
And her eyes, which never
closed at the heights of pleasure,
expressed an otherworldly rapture,
appearing to be ashamed at the
conduct of her lips."

"Soldiers are citizens of death's grey land,
Drawing no dividend from time's to-morrows.
In the great hour of destiny they stand,
Each with his feuds, and jealousies, and sorrows.
Soldiers are sworn to action; they must win
Some flaming, fatal climax with their lives.
Soldiers are dreamers; when the guns begin
They think of firelit homes, clean beds, and wives."

The Redeemer
"A rocket fizzed and burned with blanching flare,
And lit the face of what had been a form
Floundering in murk. He stood before me there;
I say that He was Christ; stiff in the glare,
And leaning forward from His burdening task,
Both arms supporting it; His eyes on mine
Stared from the woeful head that seemed a mask."

Great Poems of the Past
The Chocolate Soldier
"Some called it 'The Slim Disease' ---
Thrushes in the springtime,
Cat-scratch in the fall.
Meningitis by morning,
Lymphoma in the afternoon,
Salmonella at night.
And for our last winter together:
Candidiadis, Kaposi's..."



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.
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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
Copyright Notice
The Reginald A. Fessenden Educational Fund, Inc.

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


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