Marie Howe reads poems from What the Living Do (1998) and The Kingdom of Ordinary Time (2008), as well as a poem published in the American Poetry Review. The majority of poems are accompanied by remarks from the poet.
Pulitzer Prize-winning poet and novelist Maxine Kumin reads from her then-recent collection Nurture (1989), together with poems written throughout her career, as well as two poems that would go on to be collected in her next book, Looking for Luck (1992). Many of the poems consider connections between animals and humans. Kumin also reads a series of three elegies to her longtime friend Anne Sexton.
Jim Simmerman reads from a manuscript that would become his collection Kingdom Come (1999), a series of persona poems written in the voices of various Biblical characters. Jewell Parker Rhodes reads from her first novel, Voodoo Dreams: A Novel of Marie Laveau (1993), inspired by the life of the famed 19th century Voodoo Queen. She reads two scenes from the novel, the first set just before Marie Laveau's tenth birthday, and the second during the performance of one of Laveau's greatest miracles.