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

Volume XXVII, Number 4

Early Winter 2001

 
NEW LISTINGS
God and the Evolving Universe and
Publishing Past Present & Future


REVIEWS
The Tattered Cloak
"I swear to you, they're waiting for you.
Everything's all set for your arrival.
The orange trees are blooming in the gardens,
and from the windows of the white villa
you can see to the bottom of the sea. And you know, in the evening
dark blue dragonflies like you've never seen
flit around the garden.
It's time for you to go. It's time!"


In Search of Deep Throat
"The very name, Deep Throat,
is a fine and ironic one. Linda Lovelace
was the star in a blue movie of the same title, famous
for her ability to accomplish penetrating acts
of laryngectomy to satisfy her needy clients.
To name a mysterious Republican mole Deep Throat
says much about the character of politics in those days."


The Selected Poems of Robert Penn Warren
"The editor of this volume is no help
in this mystery of the deification of the poetically challenged.
He doesn't breathe a word about Warren's greatest narrative poem,
All the King's Men, which contains one of the most riveting
opening pages in American literature, a rich paean to
the hot isolation of back-country southern life and ways
from seventy years ago."


Great Reviews of the Past
Six Wars at a Time
"Gutzon Borglum sounds like
one of those peculiar diseases that the research doctors
keep coming up with, but actually Borglum is the man
who sculpted or blasted (or whatever you want to call it)
the four presidential faces at Mount Rushmore."


BRIEF REVIEWS
Maverick in Madagascar,
Hale Boggs and the Big Lie, and
The Essential Galbraith


ARTICLES
The New Old Left
"I resisted the temptation to ask
whether Herbert Hoover had tricked Stalin into ruining Soviet agriculture
through forced collectivization or whether Warren G. Harding
had bamboozled Lenin into setting up the first Arctic forced labour camps."

Michael Bader
"There I was in my rumpled
Brooks Brothers jacket and my raggedy hair-do;
there was Bader always impeccably dressed and groomed.
There we were together before the FCC,
trying to get me another renewal, another license,
another construction permit."


READINGS
Nine Years Before an Ironing Board
Part I

"Nine years. No, I can't believe it.
Do things really happen like that? Why?
Why, though I had committed no crime, did I
end up standing at an ironing board for nine years
lifting a heavy iron?"

Part II
"His How do you do, Sasha
and his advice to live like a bird, perhaps the wind,
not to be afraid of anything, to wrap ourselves up
in the two-thousand-year-old cloak, our cloak,
albeit ripped in two, remained with me
throughout my Paris life."


POETRY
The Cave Club
"The truckers, college boys, and paraplegics
suck on their cokes and smoke like prisoners
by the small stage, where naked women dance.
A life-size blue and orange hummingbird
flits inches from my face..."
Three from Teachers & Writers
"The yells and tears and sweat
as she pushes you into the wall ---
your saliva mingles in the air
with the leftover pizza spell."


LETTERS
A Puerile Magazine Named RALPH;
Life in the World Trade Center


THE OFFICIAL RALPH
Paradox-of-the-Month


HELP
Perpetuate honest, noisy, pesky book reviews.
Subscribe, and get a free copy of one of the newest titles from
Mho & Mho Works
along with a print-out of some of our most pithy reviews, in
The Folio


TABLE OF CONTENTS
Titles, authors, and publishers
of all books reviewed in RALPH ---
arranged chronologically.


THE PREVIOUS RALPH
This will lead you to our last issue ---
and, from there, back to the previous seventy or so,
to our earliest which appeared during
the cold wet winter of 1994-1995.

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.
History

RALPH didn't spring full-blown from the brows of the gods:
     We've been around (in different guises) for over twenty-five years.     
The Fessenden Fund
Other activities of RALPH's godparents, including
Mho & Mho Works

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

poo@cts.com


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