On February 16, 2003, eleven contemporary poets held a reading in Manchester, Vermont, called "A Poetry Reading in Honor of the Right to Protest as a Patriotic and Historical Tradition." The reading was sponsored by the Northshire Bookstore and drew a crowd of more than six hundred people. Cry Out: Poets Protest the War gathers together the poems read by the participants, many original poems and others poems by such renowned poets as Langston Hughes, Pablo Neruda, and Walt Whitman. Among the poets present at the reading were Julia Alvarez, Donald Hall, Jamaica Kincaid, Galway Kinnell, William O'Daly, Grace Paley, Jay Parini, and Ruth Stone. Celebrating poetry's vital and historic role as a means of peaceful protest, these poems remind us, as Jay Parini observed, that although it might take time, "the language of poetry seeps through." And that this language has the potential to redirect the fate of nations.