Malinda Markham's peoms are inspired in part by her fascination with Japanese language, art, and literature. Her reactions to and interpretations of that country's history, culture, and people are in these verses, echoing with the voices and silences of women across time. Markham imagines the experiences of many women: a geisha laments her past in "Geisha Considered as Making," as a mother laments for her daughter's future in "Yield to This." Markham is intrigued with how language tries but ultimately fails to hold memory in place. She grapples with the translation of words and feeling and shows how this failure also brings a searching for belief - a word that repeats throughout these poems - in a world that cannot allow it. Writes Cole Swenson, "Markham's language has the delicacy of the fine bones of the inner ear; it is, itself, a form of listening - to insects, birds, traffic, to the world. Her listening brings things into being, catching the nuances of change, from season to season, culture to culture, impression to language. This is a radiant collection."