, I'm sorry to not really answer your question, but: I'm not clear why you want to do it like that? Does Curses force it on you somehow? Wouldn't it be easier to just run through $x..$x+3 and $y..$y+3 each time?
Perhaps I'm missing something. I think that PDL can do what you want, but it's probably overkill...
Best wishes, andye
update: actually, come to think of it: one way that you could do what you want would be to store the definition of @A as a string, then eval() it when you need it. That should work all right.
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