In these six stories, Willa Cather vividly captures the character of early 1900s Pittsburgh, a place she called home during her formative years as a writer. She depicts a city a where culture is beginning to take root, rising from the harsh industrial landscape. Her characters, ranging from a skinny young usher boy to an elderly doctor, seek meaning in music, art, and human connection. Through them, Cather explores the dual nature of art as a higher purpose. Art tugs at the edges of human emotion, inspiring a sense of wonder, but also instilling an insatiable longing for beauty in a disorderly world. Cather deftly captures transient moments of brilliance and pain to convince us of this fundamental truth.