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

Volume XIX, Number 4 --- Late Late Spring 2000


RALPH'S GREAT BOOKS
Our editors gathered yet again to pick and choose
from the many books received by us over the last few months,
and to offer these ten as most worthy of your attention.


NEW LISTINGS
Two reviews of The Autobiography of Joseph Stalin,
Isaac Newton in the Irish countryside, and
The Doll's House by Henrik Ibsen


REVIEWS
Lost Property: Memoirs and Confessions of a Bad Boy
"I am in a cantina getting morbidly drunk with the local fishermen
and that son-of-a-bitch is hanging about with the likes of
Melvin Lasky (of Encounter Magazine), tippling with Kenneth Tynan,
telling jokes telling jokes to Samuel Beckett."

Where the Roots Reach for Water
"It was the perfect ideal childhood. Wonderful mother ---
who loved books like he did, read to him all the time,
talked with him. Wonderful Mom, wonderful Dad. Where's the beef?"

The Three Principal Aspects of the Path
"The best kind of practitioner dies with joy.
A mediocre practitioner has no fears and
the least accomplished practitioner has no regrets."


BRIEF REVIEWS
The Love You Promised Me,
The Great Flu Epidemic of 1918, and
Forensic Murder with Throbbing Breasts


ARTICLES
Doing the Tarantella at the Barnes Foundation
Part One
"Imagine a classroom in which to the left of you is a Renoir nude,
and next to that, a Braque study, and Picasso's
Acrobat and Young Harlequins. Right above was the huge and lush
La Grande Jatte by Seurat --- with a Gauguin flanking it to the right,
a Modilgliani to the left. "

Part Two
"Suddenly my milkmaid's roseate elbow was protruding out of the canvas,
hanging out over the decorative gilt frame (where it certainly didn't belong).
A three dimensional young woman, inside a two-dimensional canvas."


READINGS
Henry Miller in Paris
"No appointments, no invitations for dinner,
no program, no dough. The golden period,
when I had not a single friend."

The Smell of Rancid Butter
"The soup tastes as if a dish rag
had been stewed in it --- slightly sour, mildewed, scummy.
I see Eugene hiding it away in the commode after the meal.
It stays there, rotting away, until the next meal.
The butter, too, is hidden away in the commode;
after three days it tastes like the big toe of a cadaver."


POETRY
Flow Gently, Sweet Afton
"Flow gently, sweet Afton, among thy green braes!
Flow gently, sweet river, the theme of my lays!
My Mary's asleep by thy murmuring stream ---
Flow gently, sweet Afton, disturb not her dream!


LETTERS
Falling in love with Lolita Lark, and
Who is that A. W. Allworthy, anyway?


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


THE PREVIOUS ISSUE OF RALPH
This will lead you back to our last issue, and,
if you persist, all the way back to the very first one,
from the Dark and Wet Winter of our Conception,
1994 - 1995.


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


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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