The Review of Arts, Literature,
Philosophy and the Humanities

  Number 230

Mid-Fall 2012

Twelve Great Poems
Starting almost eighteen years ago
we searched for verses (and versifiers)
that were being ignored
by the establishment literary magazines.
Here is a selection of a dozen
of our favorites from
the more than 500 we have
posted online over the years.

Christopher Hitchens
"He goes into the rich detail
of his body becoming
a reservoir of pain,
meditates on the old wheeze
that pain makes us better people, and
offers thoughts on whether the phrase
the war on cancer
is appropriate."

Human Anatomy
"Several cadavers
show pride in their work.
Eyes on heaven
mouths open as if breathing,
they stand with fist on hip,
elbow out, in an assertive
posture of a warrior."

Me, Who Dove into the Heart of the World
"Karen comes up with
an idea for undersea cages ---
thirty of them ---
where tuna can thrive,
a paradise garden in which
they will grow fat and
begin to breed
in the wild again."

Summer of Hate
"We can't exactly see what
this sophisticated lady ---
she's just written a book
about the Bloomsbury folks ---
sees in this fortyish ex-con
eternally spouting twelve step lines
from The Book."

"This one is different:
150 pages filled with
Hiroshima, Nagasaki, radiation burns,
250,000 dead and a time
when we in the United States
grew up so rapidly
that we didn't know what hit us."

It's Fine By Me
"Where the hell have you been fishing then?"
my father said and hurled Egil against the wall.
I felt the thump through my whole body
and Egil was winded,
he turned white and then
he began to sob."

The Better End
"You should be sure
that your lawyer is aware of
all the crackpots in your family,
and is prepared to finesse any
demands that you be kept around
long after the lights have been dimmed
and the furnace is ready
to be shut down."

Great Reviews of the Past
Oil on The Brain
Adventures from the Pump to the Pipeline
"Americans pay a special tax on imported gasoline:
the expense of our military presence in the Persian Gulf.
By one estimate the hidden costs
of defense and import spending are
the equivalent of an extra $5 for
every gallon of imported gasoline."

This winter, we will have on hand
a boxed-set double hardback ---
over 900 pages ---
The Noisiest Book Review in the Known World.
It will contain more than
200 reviews, poems,
readings, and articles from
the first eighteen years of RALPH.
If you are interested, please click here:
and you will find more than enough information
about our latest escapade.

A Review of The Noisiest
Book Review in the Known World

Christopher Hitchens

Samuel Johnson and Psoriasis

Bizarre Letter of the Month
This Business Is Secret

The Night They Pinched My Poke
"The very presence of a pistol
changes interactions between people.
The man and his ski-mask were one thing,
but that sidearm was another.
It assured him that
there would be no monkey business
nor complaints
on my part. "

The Prince and the Princess
"Plum in the center of the room,
the prince can see the body of the girl,
who is sleeping on a litter of oak branches and
wrapped round in flowers of every color."

"So when, in the bare room,
in the strict bed, she said,
"You want to see?" her hands
were busy at her neckline,
untying the robe, not looking
down at it, stitches
bristling where the breast
had been, but straight at me."

"They've reached the middle years.
Spared grief, they are given dread
as they tend the frail on either side of them.
Even their marriage is another child,
grown rude and querulous
since death practiced on them and withdrew."


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

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