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

Number 166

Late Fall 2007

Fire in the City
"The eccentric
Pope Alexander VI,
affectionately known to
his followers as The Odd Father,
came to resent Savonarola's
private audiences with God,
and didn't care for his
gnocchi francese either."

"It's crammed with such despair
that we might wonder how Ms. Leonard
was able to pick up her camera
(and herself) to make it out of
her drab apartment onto
the drab streets to record such
bleakness from the urban depths of
Uganda, Mexico, Brooklyn."

Where Have All the Soldiers Gone?
"The military horrors of
WWI and WWII were so
startlingly awful that when the
United States and Russia
squared off in 1947,
the Europeans were able
to give up military adventurism,
leave the warring to
the two great powers."

Mr. Sebastian and the Negro Magician
"As Inter-Racial
Thrash Literature,
this pummeling
is neither enlightening,
certainly not funny.
It's not even well done."

"It's always good news
when a statue of a dictator is pulled down,
though what follows can be alarming.
The Romans, ever frugal,
recycled their statues,
changing the nameplates
when one tyrant fell
from favor and another
rose to take his place."

The Canon
"So Werner Heisenberg
is driving along,
and a cop pulls him over.
The cop asks Heisenberg,
Do you know
how fast you were going?

Heisenberg replies:
No, but I know
exactly where I am."

American Prometheus
"If you ever
for a moment
dreamed that
the government
and its agents
were out to get you ---
stay away from this one.
Every paranoid nightmare
you had or
even dreamed you had
came true for Oppenheimer."

Great Reviews of the Past
The Illness Narratives
"Death perhaps is
the meaning of life.
Only when we think of it
in the real terms of our death
do we realize this is
the ultimate relevance.
You see, Hadley,
death is making me
into a philosopher."

Sex Texts from the Bible
The Last Voyage of Columbus
An Anthology of Contemporary
Polish Women's Poetry

The Arizona Desert
What Happens to Review Copies
of Books Sent to RALPH?

H. L. Mencken
Wislawa Szymborska

Claude Debussy
The Dew-Line

Wall Street
Ads in RALPH

The Dew-Line Bears
"It was festooned
with damp hangings and damp rugs.
The Fedders air conditioners
squeaked and squealed as
I drank myself into a stupor
each night after work,
spooned myself to sleep
with jellied gin.
A wholesome treat that."

Comme les Autres
"The story has generated much comment,
not surprising in view of Arthur Miller's
reputation as a humanitarian, moralist,
and unofficial tribune of the Left.
Conservative bloggers, in particular,
have been having a field day excoriating
Miller's character in the light of his
apparently heartless treatment of
his youngest child."

Filming in Africa
"Do critics help to
disseminate the products?"
"There are no critics."
"Is there any feedback
to suggest how the products
are received by the customers?"
"The feedback of cash."
"Which suggests that
this type of product
is satisfying a real demand."

Friesenhahn's Act
"After six months,
Heinz von Friesenhahn
had lost both forearms
to hyena bites.
He was still of the
opinion that the animals
were not aggressive.
He blamed himself for
not being careful enough."

A Gypsy Child
"and then he'll be a well-to-do man
he'll sell his life for his starry silver coins
so he can lie down by the cross in the field
and talk to God who also screams."

The Touch and the Taste
"I'm sitting in his house in front of a fire;
flames and fruit are reflected
in the dampness of my sex,
cut-up pomegranates, huge apples."

Advice for Her Who Was Named a Woman
"So rule the roost while you're still young
win anything you can while there's still time
tease him and be unfaithful
make him pay for your favors
don't give him a moment of peace nor of contemplation
don't allow him a moment of concentration or of privacy."


All the back-issues of RALPH,
including titles of books under review,
along with author, subject, and publisher,
plus links to readings, articles, and poems
that have appeared on-line
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
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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