The Review of Arts, Literature,
Philosophy and the Humanities

  Number 246

Late Winter 2013 - 2014

A Heap of Paradoxes
Since 1994, we have,
in each issue, published a
Paradox-of-the-Month ---
an adage, a dictum,
a grand old saw ---
that tries to plumb the
Many Mysteries of Life.
Out of the 245 posted so far,
here are twenty or so
that promise to
bewilder, befuddle, or bemuse.

Monkey Mind
"Anxiety compels a person to think,
but it is the type of thinking that
gives thinking a bad name:
solipsistic, self-eviscerating,
unremitting, vicious."

Hawthorn & Child
"It was a bakery.
They used to have
tiered wedding cakes
in the window.
Edible bride,
edible groom."

Going Home
"There are also see-in-the-dark lenses,
a 'Glo-Toob' lithium light,
an Energizer headlamp, and
two-liter 'Platypus bags.'"

Visit Sunny Chernobyl
"The result is that
we don't really buy our
electronics from China after all.
We just rent them and
then send them back
to be torn apart."

Capturing the Light
"Mr. Brady has done something
to bring the terrible reality and
earnestness of the war.
If he had not brought bodies and
laid them in our very door-yards
and along [our] streets,
he has done something
very like it."

The Chronicle of Jazz
"A wave of vulgar, filthy,
and suggestive music has
inundated the land.
Nothing but ragtime prevails,
and the cakewalk with its
obscene posturings,
its lewd gestures."

The Best American Magazine Writing
"Many people ---
and I'm one of them ---
absolutely live with loneliness
all the time.
It's like an illness."

Great Reviews of the Past
My Mother Wears Combat Boots
"She opines that
since she and her child
had been together so
intimately for nine months,
she was not about to send her off
to sleep by herself."

Written Lives
"Rimbaud never changed his clothes and
therefore smelled disgusting,
left any bed he slept in full of lice,
drank constantly (preferably absinthe), and
rewarded his acquaintances with nothing but
impertinence and insults."

Blue Days, Black Nights

Love Sweeting Not Sweating

Cryptic Letters of the Month
Now u know the alphabet
The Hospital in Comma

When Cripples Get Arrested
"The cops huddled.
How should they handle
these disobedient cripples?
They broke huddle.
An ominous van pulled up.
It said Department of Homeland Security on the side.
Uh oh! Could this be the infamous
Dick Cheney Torture-Mobile?"

Working in a Chinese
Computer Destruction Factory
"And that is how I
began my career in
electronics recycling,
in the employ of
an eight-year-old firebrand
called Lang."

The End of Slavery
"In 1860,
slaves were, collectively,
the single most
valuable economic asset
in the United States,
worth an estimated $3 billion,
a vast sum in those days
(and about $10 trillion in today's money)."

The Decline of Violence
"No European in 1800
could have imagined that in 2000
Europe would have no legal slavery,
women would be able to vote, and
gay people would be able to marry."

When You Return
"When you return, sweaters will unravel
and wool grow on the sheep.
Rock will go home to mountain, gold
to vein. Wine crushed into the grape,
oil pressed into the olive. Silk reeled in
to the spider's belly. Night moths
tucked close into cocoons, ink drained
from the indigo tattoo."

Great Poems of the Past
Feldwebel Zorn's Motorcycle
"Just the Zümdapp, in the corner of my shed,
among the wardrobes, bicycles, and automobile tires
Grease keeps it from rust, moths, flies, and ants have died in it, this sticky trap
In which there's no salvation, either for them, or for me"

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