The Review of Arts, Literature,
Philosophy and the Humanities

  Number 212

Mid-Spring 2011

Twelve Great Readings
In each issue
over the past sixteen years,
we have published readings from
books under review,
or from past favorites.
Here are a dozen of the best.

The Hidden Legacy

knows no boundaries and
pays no heed to politics or
economic interests,
only to the wind
and the rain."

Freud's Mexico
"When Freud arrived
in New York City
he was bemused by
the crowds he saw,
is rumored to have said,
They don't realize
we're bringing them
the plague."

Enlightening the World
"Thank God those who
were there to build
the Statue of Liberty ---
Irish immigrants under
the direction of other immigrants
from France and Italy ---
didn't have to see her
hiding her face in shame."

The Secret Life of Bletchley Park
"Encoding is a mechanical process.
So, the key theory ---
proposed by Alan Turing ---
is that there has to be
a mechanical process that
can unravel these exchanges."

Stone in a Landslide
"All of a sudden she realized
that at last death
was on its way because
she was over fifty and
she didn't want anything now
or in the future."

Hiroshima in the Morning
"When the atomic bomb was
dropped on Hiroshima,
he was playing in the yard
on his beloved tricycle.
He died later that day.
His father buried his tricycle with him
because he couldn't bear to think
of his three-year-old boy
alone in the ground."

Outside Looking In
"Wills may pretend
to be one of us,
but many of his friends ---
including some of those people
at the National Review ---
were genuine stinkers."

There Is a Road to Everywhere
Except Where You Came From

"A woman behind me
was saying she'd seen people
jumping out of windows.
I turned and looked at her.
Her face was red from crying.
Her eyes were crazy."

Great Reviews of the Past
"The water in the desert,
like the desert itself,
is hot.
That's why the scorpions and
agaves and turtles and prickly pears
and bighorn sheep
(what's left of them)
like it so much."

One Way Anchor Text Links

Viper's Tangle
What Does It Mean?

Cryptic Letters of the Month
Blow Mould
Dead Neon

Letters We Never Finished Reading
Plan Crash
Pope Innocent

Soviet Cars
"In line with Socialist principles,
its transmission worked
with three forward gears
that were all the same,
and it would not go into
reverse without a direct order
from the Politbureau."

"Plasty, as he was
known to the fans,
began not as a visitor
from a distant planet or
a scion of great wealth,
but rather as a petty crook
named Eel O'Brian."

Rise of the Nazis
"In that year, 1923,
the swastikas, storm troops, and
the name of Adolf Hitler
almost lapsed into oblivion.
No one thought of him
as a potential
political force any more."

Great Readings from the Past
Exotic Fleas

it is interesting to note,
has the smallest fleas in China;
they are much prized by collectors,
but I was fortunate enough
to secure three or four
fine specimens."

Arms of the Snake
"Because she has no arms,
she embraces him with her body,
crawls the distance of his flesh
like a light-starved vine."

Great Poems from the Past
Green Green I Want You Green
"Green green I want you green:
Green the wind, green the branches.
The ship upon the sea
and the horse in the mountain.
With the shadow at her waist
She dreams in her veranda,
green the flesh, green the hair,
and her eyes of cold silver."


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

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