In "dark phrases," the lady in brown steps onto stage and describes the importance of "colored girls" singing a song of possibilities to find themselves. The lady in brown calls out that she is from outside a specific city, followed by her six companions each doing the same. They all sing a nursery rhyme together, indicating the transition from childhood to adulthood.
In "graduation nite," the lady in yellow celebrates with her friends after graduating from high school. She and her male friends go out driving and attend parties, where they dance. She feels free and happy and later that night, loses her virginity to one of her male friends. Her first major sexual encounter is a a positive experience.
In "now i love somebody more than," the lady in blue describes her love for Latin music and how confident she is when she dances to it. She explores the two sides of her cultural identity through music - salsa and blues. She discovers the blues and finds it to be powerful and life-affirming.
In "no assistance," the lady in red talks about how passionately she loved a man. She loved him so much she forgot herself, so she has decided to end their affair.
In "i'm a poet who," the lady in orange describes how much she loves to dance, and the other women chime in, agreeing that dancing keeps them from crying and dying.
In "latent rapists,'" the ladies bemoan the fact that young women are taught that rapists are strangers hiding in the bushes. However, they describe the common occurrence of date rape - a man whom they might have had dinner with or even been in a relationship is more commonly the perpetrator. It is hard to press charges against a friend because it makes the victim feel insecure and it makes others question the validity of her claim.
In "abortion cycle #1," the lady in blue describes undergoing an abortion. She relives the searing physical pain, the shame, and the isolation (she did not tell anyone about her pregnancy so she is alone during the procedure.)
In "sechita," the lady in purple shares the story of Sechita, who gets dolled up to dance as part of the the Creole Carnival in Natchez, MS. She gets ready in front of the mirror, and the lady in purple describes her as powerful, passionate, and luminous. The lady in purple compares Sechita to goddesses, but her on Earth, her heavenly features are covered in grime.
In "toussaint," the lady in brown discovers the tale of Haitian revolutionary Toussaint L'Ouverture while reading a book at the library. She pretends that he is with her, and he gives her strength as she navigates her recently integrated school and neighborhood. Eventually, she decides to run away to Haiti with Toussaint L'Ouverture (even though nobody else can see him). On the way, a little boy tries to talk to her and she is annoyed. However, the boy tells her his name is Toussaint Jones and he does not let anyone boss him around, just like Toussaint L'Ouverture. The lady in brown is impressed with this real-life Toussaint and remains in St. Louis to get to know him better.
In "one," the lady in red tells the tale of a gorgeous and seemingly confident woman who dresses up each night to attract whatever man she wants. She scoffs at the neighborhood women who peer through their curtains waiting for their men to come home. She is glittering and magnificent and has the power to bring men home, sleep with them, and send them away in the morning. When she orders the men to leave, they are stunned by how average she looks after washing off the makeup and glitter. After they are gone, she becomes another normal woman. She writes about her encounters and then cries herself to sleep.
In "i usedta live in the world," the lady in blue describes how limited and isolating it is to live within the six blocks of Harlem. She misses experiencing the world outside New York, as she finds Harlem to be bleak and cruel.
In "pyramid," three women fall in love with the same man. He ends up choosing one of them, who also falls desperately in love with him. While she is away, though, he pursues one of her friends, who falls in love with him as well. The "chosen one" finds out and both women decide to confront their cheating suitor. They find him with yet another woman. Later, the friends are console each other, lamenting their entanglement with this dishonest man.
In "no more love poems #1," the lady in orange describes how she has tried to live fully and embrace love, but her man treated her terribly. Now she is wondering how she can possibly go on. She is experiencing doubts about her self-worth and her racial identity.
In "no more love poems #2," the lady in purple describes her love for a man whom she badly wants to be involved with. She needs his love.
In "no more love poems #3," the lady in blue muses that it might be easier for her to be white because white women seem to be able to cover up their emotions and be cold. The lady in blue, however, cannot hide the fact that she wants to be loved.
In "no more love poems #4," the lady in yellow talks about navigating her identity, and learning to accept the fact that she is "colored," a woman, and a human being.
In "somebody almost walked off wid alla my stuff," the lady in green describes an incident when one of her old lovers walked away with her stuff – her body, her memories, her scars. She wants this piece of her self back, asserting that only she can determine the value of her stuff.
In "sorry," the ladies proclaim that they are tired of hearing apologies and excuses from men. They encourage these men to accept their flaws and be real instead of conjuring up apologies to placate their partners.
In "positive," the lady in yellow gets back together with DJ, her ex. They are happy until another woman tells the lady in yellow that DJ might be gay. The lady in yellow gets tested and finds out she is HIV positive, so she confronts DJ. He is furious at the implication that he might be gay, so he beats her and leaves her.
"A nite with beau willie brown" tells the story of an Iraq veteran named Beau Willie Brown. He cannot hold down a job and suffers from drug addiction and latent PTSD. He wants to marry his longtime lover Crystal, with whom he has two children, but she keeps kicking him out because of his violent streak and drug problems. He breaks into her apartment anyway and tries to force her to love him. When she clearly cannot accept his apologies, he drops their two children out of the fifth story window.
In "a layin on of hands," the ladies come together to affirm each other, find God in each other and themselves, and revel in their strength and empowerment. They have considered suicide but eventually moved to the end of their own rainbows.