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

Number 145

Early Spring 2006

Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
"The old man was a Transcendentalist and
a wit --- and damn near lived forever.
His son lived damn near forever, too,
but he didn't write any funny books
unless you consider The Common Law or
The Collected Legal Papers
as knee-slappers in disguise."

All the Fishes Come Home to Roost
Part I
"We'd be playing in the back yard
and could hear Mary yelp.
'No, no, no,' she would cry.
'No, please ... no,' she would cry.
Sadie and I and even Ralph and David would
giggle about her 'tough' math lesson.
So much for peer support."
Part II
"Remember what a lark
Bonnie and Clyde?
Knocking over banks,
running from the police
in funny old cars, the characters ...
and all of a sudden a sheriff
jumps on the running-board,
gets shot, and there in the spider-web
of the shattered window,
we see a bloody face,
a man stricken, falling away,
and it isn't a lighthearted romp anymore."

Travels with My Chicken
"Think of a pet who will,
if the right sex,
deliver your breakfast to you daily.
Think of another pet that
eats the bugs and worms
in your front yard.
Think of another pet that doesn't
try to crawl in bed with you or
lick your face or
throw up on your crotch or best rug."

A Fractured Mind
Part I
"Turns out these gambits
were not the fault of Robert B. Oxnam
but, rather, a product of Bobby,
or Robby, or Tommy, or Bob;
or maybe Baby, or the 'Eye,'
or perhaps even the Witch.
It was a regular kaffeeklatsch inside there."

Part II
"Some idiot called Bobby
takes over the narrative
at too many points.
He is not only a juvenile delinquent
in thought and action,
his writing is a royal pain."

Viper's Tangle
"If she wanted to protect
her children from forty years of
emotional abuse handed out by this ghoul,
she would have hauled herself off
to the Town Hall at Bordeaux in Year One
to get a writ against
the old goat for mental, social,
psychological, emotional, heart-warping,
soul-grinding, head-twisting

Great Reviews of the Past
Photography and the Smithsonian Institution
"There's a shot of Marian Anderson
singing in Washington, D. C., in 1939.
Since she was black,
and this was the time of segregation,
the Daughters of the American Revolution,
in what must be one of the great
Public Relations moves of all times,
refused to let her sing at Constitution Hall.
Harold Ickes invited her to sing
at the Lincoln Memorial.
75,000 people attended."

Boss Tweed
Some Church
Franz Joseph Haydn

Bonobos & Animal Rights
From Baghdad to Brooklyn

Michael Bader
Love and Marriage
Elementary Education

H. G. Wells
War of the Worlds

The Periodic Table of the Couples
"The we never do it anymore couple;
the we still do it all the time and
we want everybody to know it couple;
the Jesus is our co-pilot couple;
the our dogs are our children couple;
the been there done that couple."

Great Articles of the Past
The Barnes Foundation
"To hell with Van Gogh's ear,
Rosseau's boring weekday job,
Gaugin's adventures in the South Seas,
Seurat's suicide.
The painting itself was the question,
and the painting was the answer."

Faith, Hope and Chastity
Part I
"Given how physically pleasurable
orgasm and its preamble are,
the Christian achievement in bending
the collective human mind away
from thoughts of sex as anything beyond
an occasionally necessary bodily function
was no small feat."
Part II
"When he drew it out,
I thought he was drawing them
out with it and he left me
completely afire
with a great love of God.
The pain was so sharp
that it made me utter several sharp moans;
and so excessive was the sweetness
caused me by this intense pain
that one can never wish to lose it."


"There is a star so magnetic that at the distance of the moon
Its attractive power would rearrange the molecules in our bodies.
Archaeologists believe that certain delicate phials
found in Roman ruins were meant to hold tears."

The Wonderful One-Hoss Shay
"Have you heard of the wonderful one-hoss shay,
That was built in such a logical way
It ran a hundred years to a day,
And then of a sudden it --- ah, but stay,
I'll tell you what happened without delay,
Scaring the parson into fits,
Frightening people out of their wits, ---
Have you ever heard of that, I say?
Seventeen hundred and fifty-five."


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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T H E  F A C T S
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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
Behind the Scenes

The Faces of Those Who Make Up the Face of RALPH
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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