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

Number 139

Late Mid-Fall 2005

For our one-hundredth issue,
we posted a semi-salacious
"Introduction to those
behind the scenes at RALPH."
Here it is reproduced entire,
with the usual lurid photographs of
our editors, reviewers and in-house
trauma specialists.

The Worst Hard Time
"One could not see far enough
to farm, to go to school,
or go to town. Sometimes it was
impossible to go next door.
One could 'drive for days
without seeing a single green thing.'"

The Secret of M. Dulong
"'We chose you from all the others,'
Ruthie insisted. What others I wondered,
had she been shopping for a child?"

Fly-ku: To Swat or Not to Swat
"For Robin Gill, these pesky flies
are a bonanza. Of haiku.
And 600 of them appear here.
As poems ... not as bugs."

Lost Christianities
The Battles for Scriptures and
The Faiths We Never Knew

"They tell us that
'The Scripture' is just that,
a divine message from on high.
But Ehrman presents us with the
other Christianities that lost out ---
sometimes through bitter wrangling,
propaganda, and subterfuge by those
who came to have vast power
in the first two or three centuries."

Luke Swank
"Steel-mills are hardly peony gardens.
The back streets of 1930 Pittsburgh
may have had a few cheerful venues,
but you won't find them here.
The painted clowns have
an edge of
Pagliacci-like moodiness."

A House at the End of Tears
"He also loves trees.
Not cedars, they are too old.
He took to loathing them
after he learned that behind the hill of cedars
that overhangs his mother's village
there was another, even higher hill,
and then a mountain, and
more mountains behind that."

Great Reviews of the Past
Poet Power
"Take that $1,500 - $2,500
you were going to spend on your book of poetry
and invest it in something safe.
Like frozen pork bellies.
It's a helluva lot more fun,
and gives you a 50/50 chance for some
return on invested dollar."

Small Island
The World's Oceans
The Persistence of Memory

My Bloody Life
Angry Letters to RALPH

Benjamin Britten and
The Nuns of Paoli,
Hurricane Fred,
Angry Letters II:
Contemporary American Pottery

Great Letters of the Past
"I believe I shall be
writing home about this trip
for the rest of my life.
I think I may easily develop
a mania to be heard out
and may well be seen, years from now,
still recollecting, like an old white hunter,
shadowy images to an empty fireplace,
far into the night."

Pain and Zen Buddhism
"Can you share some of
the benefits of chronic pain
that you've discovered
in your twenty-five years
of dealing with rheumatoid arthritis?"

Black GIs in England
"No whites going to be
resting in Netting Ham unless
they're looking for trouble and
then they're going to get a whole heap of it
'cause Netting Ham is a
black-GIs-only area.
But me and Jon here,
we ain't looking for trouble ---
we're looking to have a nice time with our ladies.
A little dancing, something to eat and
if you get my meaning, Joe."

Christianity 1900 Years Ago
"Christians by their very nature
became exclusivists, claiming to be
right in such a way that everyone else was
necessarily wrong. As some of
the early Christian writings exclaimed,
There is salvation in no one else,
for there is no other name
under heaven given among humans
by which we must be saved."

A Seasonal Tradition

"He thinks
He can hear the unheard music in the same way he can hear
Wind among the black strings of the icy willows blowing
In the tundra night. He thinks the silence he hears
Is the same silence found in the eyes of the frogs living
Below the mud at the bottom of the frozen bays."

The Year All the Clowns Were Executed
"Many saw them taken away, crowded
in the wagons, chained together,
their oblong white faces peering
through the slats, eyebrows arched high
with bewilderment."


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

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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