The Global Online Magazine of Arts, Information & Entertainment

January-Febuary 2016 |Volume 12 Number 1


Pennsylvania GOTH:

Photographer Curtis Salonick

“Salonick’s world is not populated by ordinary street scenes, or casual fashion photography, but by images that combine imagination and relativity in stark and often eerie detail.”


Featured Posts


tri_president‘Tis the season…

by Jim Palombo Politics Editor As the new year comes upon us there is a tendency to get a bit wishful. And although we live in the “land of plenty”, especially as compared to the rest of the world, there always seems a little more that we can at least hope might come our way. That spirit being noted I thought of a few things that on a societal level I might ask…


Casual Observer

hello_middle2MIDDLE NAMES

by Mark Levy I’m going to give you plenty of advanced notice to get ready for Middle Name Pride Day this time around. Mark your calendars. My online sources list March 10th as the special day to celebrate middle names…






by Fred Roberts Contributing Music Editor The Blues are alive and well in the Warnow Delta of Rostock, Germany. The Louisiana Bayou, home of the evil eye, mojos and spells, isn’t just a physical location, it’s a realm visible to a few chosen souls wherever in the world they are. In a town circa 5000 miles away from New Orleans…



Steve takes the call. Circa 1954. Photographer unknown.


by Stephen Poleskie            

The photo above is of me talking on a telephone when telephones were for talking on, not typing out messages to one’s friends with your thumb, or playing games, or getting directions that get you lost anyway…


Editor's Note

Isolated instances of terrorism put us all on edge, if not at risk. We buy guns, install steel doors, add more robust locks, accept 24/7 surveillance and the presence of armed guards in locations of strategic import including airports, train stations, power plants and even shopping malls. We spend more on a few advanced warplanes than we do on the arts in general, billions on video games that translate into simulations designed to ready generations of warriors to die for God and Country, neither of which is necessarily a bad thing when we are truly up against an imminent threat. And there’s no denying imminent threats exist.

Given those needs, why do we diminish the value of the Arts and their contributions to understanding other cultures and societies, as well as our own, and along with the budgets that are needed to maintain some kind of humanity in the maelstroms that surround us? The Arts unite people in ways no other intellectual or physical platform can. They make clear the differences in lifestyles and opinions, religions and socio-economic-political systems. These differences, at least according to the concepts of a Liberal Education, are meant to be examined and discussed, not dismissed or crushed, the way we see so many trying to do today by exploiting misunderstanding and frustration.

The mix of work we try every issue to bring to you through Ragazine is in large part a stage, a forum, to give voice and light to the varieties of life that exist on the planet today, just as we seek to explore plant life through botany, animal life through zoology, and the future…


Most Recent Posts

Curtis Salonick/Photographer Interview

I see the world as a petri dish where we represent just one biological smear, an enigma torn between our physical reality and its emotional dependencies. We don’t have a soul but a conscience that does not always serve us well. My work is an exploration of our physical and emotional boundaries and the resulting conflict between the two.

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Music Review / Fred Roberts

The Hoodoo Two’s newest EP Werewolff opens with “No Service,” conjuring images of a back country church in the swamplands (it’s that kind of service). The title track “Werewolff” captures the astonishment of a man whose lady turns into a werewolf: “Baby, you look strange tonight in the moonlight” − it can’t end well.

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From the Edge/Column

Things started to come apart: we blamed each other for things little and large: cracks opened. Staying in the same house got progressively harder for us. I have to take responsibility for doing nothing to change the direction things were going. It really was my fault, and I’d declined a wonderful opportunity and wrecked almost twenty years of our very excellent relationship. Being pig-headed is an expensive behavior form, but I fit the definition, nicely. By mutual decision, I “temporarily” moved into a small campus area rental property we owned. I strayed. I strayed a lot.

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Club Royale/Fiction

My destination was yet another church – Lawton had its saints as well as its sinners – a few blocks away. The church basement space was run-down, with a cracked linoleum floor and a water fountain so dry that not even Moses could coax liquid out of it. Members of the Peace Committee, some of them old enough to have changed Moses’ diaper, milled around with cups of coffee.

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L’arte assume Roma

A couple of months ago we received an e-mail with links to a two-part documentary by Gwen Stacy on street art in Rome, Italy. The short films came from David Capone of Dioniso Punk. It’s a good thing a few of the artists featured in the films speak English, because I would have been lost in translation from the Italian — except for the art, which speaks to the eye, not the ear. Spectacular. We’ve got great wall art in New York, and other places in the States, but the walls of Rome and its socio-political-artistic histories provide a different influence, as seen in these urban canvases. I asked David if he would elaborate a bit on the details of their work…

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The Interview/Fiction

There are no windows in his office. There is no fireplace. A dim light on his desk. A lamp in the corner. A necklace of shrunken heads atop a humidor beneath it. Add a mounted boar’s head on the wall and it’d be the perfect setting for formal introspection. A safe, sterile place to see and feel everything, to unwrap each emotion I’ve ever felt as if they were gifts to be opened on the most sunny and beautiful day of the year, which also happens to be Christmas.

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Then and Now/Steve Poleskie

The photo above is of me talking on a telephone when telephones were for talking on, not typing out messages to one’s friends with your thumb, or playing games, or getting directions that get you lost anyway. We still use a land line in our house, although my wife and I both have cell phones; or mobiles as they are called in the rest of the world…

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Galanty’s Retweets

Instead of unhealthy candy, for Halloween this year, I’m handing out selfies./ In a perfect world, EVERYONE would be trending./ Hey, guys. I’m looking for a place to crash tonight…maybe two nights…I’ll be gone by the end of the week…nine days tops…I’m never leaving./ Fun Fact; The average American spends 16 percent of their life stealing stuff./ If I was a track coach, I’d tell my sprinters to run faster.

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On Location/France

Hilja Keading: I work every second of every day, but I don’t think of it as work. I like the way Lewis Hyde writes about the difference between work and labor. And you know what they say, if you love what you do, it is not work. A few years ago we moved into a house where we converted an old stable in the back into two small studios. I am just now beginning to be fully present wherever I am. Before, when I was in the kitchen I used to think “I should be in the studio.” Or if I was in the studio, I would think “I should be cleaning up the house.” Now, I just trust that I am in the right place at the right time.

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Book Reviews

Allen Ginsberg is known as one of the United States’ most significant poets, in particular thanks to his 1956 epic, “Howl,” which was the subject of a subsequent obscenity trial. Later, Ginsberg was known throughout America and the rest of the world for his role as a countercultural leader…

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Clarence Brimley/Spoken Word

An artist friend, Karen Gunderson, introduced me to Clarence Brimley, a 35-year-old spoken-word poet from NYC. Clarence sent along a few of his poems, but without the voice. I wondered how they would sound/feel when he speaks them, when they’re heard. Clarence was glad to oblige, and sent along a few smart phone videos that appear here, accompanied by the written word. Hope you enjoy − another one of millions of emerging poets…

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Jim Palombo/Politics

My first wish would be that somehow, perhaps through a magical sense of legitimate political integrity and honest regard for our American experiment, Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and John Kasich could find a way to all hold tri-presidential powers, leading our country’s way into a future filled with the theoretical and practical presence our history deserves.

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Casual Observer/Mark Levy

A fellow named Jerry Hill got the ball rolling on middle names. He thought Middle Name Pride Day would be a good time for us to call each other by our middle names. The only people whose middle name I know are dead and it seems disrespectful to refer to the deceased by his or her middle name.

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Daniel Harris/Poetry

Micro aggressions rise blank to ascension: ur-cut,

savage, to omit the dupe—(re)emerges to femme

a skin of guts an oblique attraction. Earl Shoepeg

sucks Eddy’s soul. Earl’s an Eddy rumpologist (‘st):

burned as impurity, agent of rapture in alchemy’s

concrete trellis: McEddy coins Earl.

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Andrew Morris/Poetry

Andrew Morris lives in the Catskill Mountains of New York State where he teaches high school English and history. His work has appeared in Redivider, Ruminate Magazine, Otis Nebula, and is forthcoming in Rufous City Review. He’s also a member of the Poetry Workshop at Bright Hill Press in Treadwell, NY.

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EuroSound Reviews/Fred Roberts

This set of reviews highlights some European releases of the last months. Maia Vidal is back with her long-awaited third album You’re the Waves. Schnipo Schranke celebrate their triumphant debut with Satt, following months of viral airplay of Pisse (Piss). Sündenrausch debut with a sizzling set of songs focusing on lust: Sündstoff. Last but not least, the Eurnovision compilation delivers a knockout punch to its mainstream counterpart.

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Anthony Brunelli/Artist Interview

When I was in tenth grade, my high school art teacher, Dave Menichiello took our class on a trip to NYC. We went to some galleries and when I walked into Pace Gallery, in SoHo at the time, I was overwhelmed by nine-foot portrait paintings by the artist Chuck Close. They looked like large black and white photographs. When I got up close to them, I saw that he did them all with his thumbprint and stamp pad ink. It blew me away.

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Treasures of Thomas Merton/Staff Report

What Smelcer discovered was the most significant “treasure trove” of Mertonalia in history. While numerous archives hold letters, notes, book drafts, etc., almost nothing personal of Merton’s was known to exist. Merton was, after all, a Trappist monk, and therefore poor of earthly possessions by choice. The trove included all the clothing Merton is wearing in photographs from the last years of his life: photos of him in his white monk’s habit and black hooded cowl; photos of him in his iconic denim jacket, jeans, and sailor cap. Everything. The collection included such sacred objects as his rosary and his personal Psalter (Latin hymn book for Gregorian chant). It also included notes, photos, letters, and audiotapes of him talking.

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