Derricotte, Toi. The Empress of the Death House. Detroit: Lotus Press, 1978.
In this performance, Jimmy Santiago Baca reads from Black Mesa Poems, a collection published the year after this reading took place. He also performs poems from Martín & Meditations on the South Valley, a book that was awarded the Before Columbus American Book Award and earned Jimmy Santiago Baca an NEA grant for the year of this reading.
Lorna Dee Cervantes reads primarily from Emplumada (1981) and From the Cables of Genocide: Poems on Love and Hunger (1991). She also reads several poems that would go on to be collected in Drive: The First Quartet (2006).
Toi Derricotte reads from her first three collections: The Empress of the Death House (1978), Natural Birth (1983), and Captivity (1989). She also reads poems and prose that would later be collected in Tender (1997) and The Black Notebooks: An Interior Journey (1997), along with two unpublished poems, including one written in Tucson the night before this reading. She closes by singing an original song.
Camille T. Dungy reads primarily from What to Eat, What to Drink, What to Leave for Poison (2006). This reading was originally given with Richard Siken and Heriberto Yépez as part of the Next Word Series.
Richard Shelton reads from his memoir Nobody Rich or Famous (2016). He also reads a related poem from Selected Poems, 1969-1981 (1982).
Venita Blackburn reads from Black Jesus and Other Superheroes (2017) as well as one uncollected story.