The Review of Arts, Literature,
Philosophy and the Humanities

  Volume XIII, Number 1

Spring 1997

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The Slave Trade
"For by purchasing, or rather ransoming,
the negroes from their national tyrants," said London Magazine,
"and transplanting them under the benign influence of the law and the Gospel,
they are advanced to much greater degrees of felicity..."

Cradle of Valor
"In West Point, there are words which have overt (or not-so-overt)
sexual overtones. A roommate is called a 'wife.' To study is to 'bone'
(a 'file boner' being an overly conscientious cadet). A cadet officer
is called 'a make,' and 'to skin' is to be reported for delinquency."

The Hind Leg of an Elephant
"I reached for the cigarette. I missed it clean a couple of times,
then got my hand around it. It didn't feel like a cigarette.
It felt, like the hind leg of an elephant. With sharp toenails."

Great Reviewers from the Past: H. L. Mencken
"That it is well outfitted with theologians I could see,
but I'd like to know what they cost per annum,
and what nuisances they commit to earn their tithes."

What the Cults Believe
"He established soul-saving as Big Business,
just as surely as John D. Rockefeller established oil-refining,
or old Phil Armour the assassination of hogs,
or Pillsbury the milling of flour."

Salvador Dalí with a tube up his nose,
Another Dalí, the Dalai Lama (without a tube),
the Forgotten Peninsula (now no longer forgotten),
and The Arts of Zaire.

Pizzas, A House of Children, Cotton Mill Girls,
Gimps and Guerilla Minstrels

"Columbus brought back the Spanish king and queen
as much gold as he could squeeze out of the islands,
but this was not enough to satisfy Their Majesties.
So he also brought back thirty natives to convince
his sponsors of another source of riches: slavery."

Memoirs of the Eeenie-Weenies
"I greeted the repairman civilly from the rug, explaining that
I was tied up at the moment with my little people,
but he was welcome to go ahead with his work."

How I Made $56,072,147.08 Overnight --- II
"A formal statement from Mr. Dean Witter, of stock and bond fame.
Name (mine), address (mine), account executive (ours) credits to the account (none)
the closing account balances are, the closing account balances are...
You're now worth fifty-six million dollars, says Mr. Witter. "

The Branding (and Baptism) of Slaves
"The South Sea Company later branded its slaves with the distinctive mark
of the port in the Spanish empire to which they were being shipped ---
Cartagena, Caracas, Veracruz, and so on --- this new brand being made
of gold or silver: preferably the latter, because 'it made a sharper scar.'"

Mosquitoes, Malaria, and the Panama Canal
"They did not seriously entertain the notion that mosquitoes
could be the cause of yellow fever or malaria. To spend time and money
chasing after mosquitoes in Panama would be to
squander time and money in a most irresponsible fashion."

A Brief History of Mexico --- II
"The French landed at Very Cruz and marched on the capitol
with wagons filled with baguettes and petits-fours. The defenders of Mexico
expropriated the wagons, ate themselves silly, and were overrun.."

A Cricket in the Telephone (at Sunset)
"Stars that talk, talk of peppermint pie,
Oedipal pleasures, the daily average of
Standard and Poors, and the complete
Memoirs of Jacques Casanova."

A Supermarket in California
"I saw you, Walt Whitman, childless, lonely old grubber,
poking among the meats in the refrigerator and eyeing the grocery boys."

"You don't know the moons on the Somme:
They pluck off buds like gods,
Burst creatures come to rest,
Nights are filled with the charge of sepulchres."

Did You See She Had Flowers Up Her Nose?
"They had planned to leave but one grey lily
Eating at her breast,
An oak growing out of her sodden soul.
That is what the gardeners had planned."

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Ralph R. Doister, Editor-In-Chief
Post Office Box 16719
San Diego CA 92176


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