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

Volume XXVIII, Number 4

Late Late Winter 2001 - 2002

 
NEW LISTINGS
A New Picto-Biography of FDR
The Short Stories of Dan Chaon, and
A Spiritual Response to the
Attack on America


REVIEWS
Sex-Crime Panic
"The author points out
that they were lucky that they
were not forced to undergo castration
or the insulin injections that were meted out in other states.
But most of their lives were severely disrupted."

Looking Through Letterboxes
"The intellectual-stodgy poetry
has been cluttering the pages
of our class magazines for years.
It's diabetic, filled with unhealthy fats and oils,
bad for the heart."

My Father's Cabin
"When Shakespeare's heroes die,
we despair that the universe should pay
such a high price to right a terrible wrong.
When Phillips' hero dies ---
all we can do is grieve that so much had to be sacrificed
to create so little."


Great Reviews of the Past
Confessions of a PR Man
"An atomic radiation center
scheduled for construction by CIT Corp in Ohio?
No prob, babe. Woods has these heavy-weight friends
on the AEC, they'll pull some strings ---
the radiation center gets built, and the citizens just love it."


BRIEF REVIEWS
Bridges,
Buddhist Stupas in Asia, and
The Photographs of Flor Garduño


ARTICLES
The Short Stool Society
Part I
"There are things we don't do
at the Puerto Perdido public market.
We don't go into the meat area.
If you ever had doubts about the bloody origins of beef,
pork and sausage, or unless you were born
without a nose, you stay away."

Part II
"She has some ten varieties of bananas
including the little pecker-sized ones
that my friend Marguerite told me
taste just like old Tampax. I of course being me
asked her, How do you know?"
My Beautiful Career
"I find that taking cat-naps
four or five times a day helps to keep me in the pink,
and the ivy-covered halls of academe, with their windy
faculty meetings and frequent seminars, have long provided
an ideal venue for this practice."


READINGS
The Girl in the Chair
Part I

"Twice a week,
Geoff would wheel himself into the studios of the radio station,
put his hook into the trumpet, adjust his speculum bag ---
and blow his heart out. He always brought his funny friends with him ---
assorted misfits like Joe, Don, and Dolfin."

Part II

"Forget all the rumors of incest, pederasty, masochism and onanism
that their detractors are trying to lay against The Roots of Madness.
Even in San Jose, the Prune Capital of the world,
there are jealous, small-minded people,
who are ignorant of what we now see as the purest of
the New Smog-Belt avant-garde."


POETRY
Idleness
"I'm too lazy to read the Taoist classics, for Tao doesn't reside in the books;
Too lazy to look over the sutras, for they go no deeper in Tao than its looks;
The essence of Tao consists in a void, clear, and cool,
But what is this void except being the whole day like a fool?"

Two by Caroline Bird
"Look little children, come peek at the trail of bread,
look how the teeth marks are still fresh
since they were ripped from the loaf,
look how the birds swoop, hundreds and thousands
of hungry red mouths."


LETTERS
A Persistent Old Fart with St. Vitus' Dance


A PITHY SAMPLE
Of our most notorious reviews
as collected in the hard-copy
"FOLIO"


TABLE OF CONTENTS
All books reviewed in RALPH
since 1994
arranged chronologically.


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THE OFFICIAL RALPH
Paradox-of-the-Month

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
Describing the good works of RALPH's official godparent

Lolita Lark, Editor-In-Chief
Post Office Box 7272, San Diego CA 92167
poo@cts.com


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