The following events are in July and free to the public, unless otherwise noted.

5 -- Sunday 8-9 p.m.

"The Poet and the Poem" radio series, WPFW-FM 89.3, continues. Grace Cavalieri interviews poets and presents readings from their works; today: Robert Sargent; July 12: Patricia Garfinkle and Bill Holland.

5 -- Sunday 6:05 a.m. and 11:30 p.m.

"Soundings," conversations from the National Humanities Center in North Carolina with writers and scholars, airs on WGMS-FM radio. Today, "Religion and Government in America," with John E. Semonche. Continues on successive Sundays, same times: July 12, "Law, Community, and Conflict," with Gerald Postema; July 19, "Art and Early Church History," with Robert S. Nelson; and July 26, "The Greening of African History," with Harold Marcus.

6 -- Monday Noon.

"American Voices." Members of the Washington Stage Guild begin a summer-long program of readings from writers whose portraits are included in the exhibition "Portraits from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters" (which is showing at the National Portrait Gallery through Sept. 20). Selections include short pieces as well as serial readings of longer works, and are repeated daily, same time, for a week. This week (July 6-10), selections from Mark Twain. July 13-17, Edith Wharton's Ethan Frome. July 20-24, Bret Harte and George Washington Cable. July 27-31, Booth Tarkington. Also as part of this series: every Friday evening, beginning July 10, at 7:30 there will be selected readings from the author whose works have been read that week. National Portrait Gallery, 8th and F Streets NW. Call 357-2729.

10 -- Friday 7 p.m.

Open reading at the Takoma Park Writer's Center. Sign-up begins at 6:30. 6925 Willow St. NW. Call 654-8664.

13 -- Monday 8 p.m.

Lip Service, a poetry collective featuring Julie Barnett, Sunil Freeman, Robert Haynes, Reuben Jackson, Diana Linkous, Janice Lynch and Mark Baechtel, will present an evening of their work. dc space, 7th and E Streets NW. Call 829-3177 (after 8 p.m.).

13 -- Monday 7:30 p.m.

Poetry reading by Karlis Freivalds Twinbrook Library, Viers Mill Road at Meadow Hall Drive, Rockville, Md. Call 279-1980.

13 -- Monday 7:30 p.m.

Peter Miller discusses "Writing for the National Geographic Magazine" for a meeting of the Writers Network at the Algonkian community meeting room in CountrySide, Sterling, Va. Call 444-2098 or 450-6399.

14 -- Tuesday Noon to dusk. "R.U. Outavit" day, an annual gathering of poets and artists celebrating the passing of another year without a nuclear holocaust, featuring William Barnum, Maestro Kasara, Fire of Prometheus, and "R.U. Outavit" himself (pseudonymous poet from Boston). On the Mall, across from the National Air and Space Museum. Sponsored by Post-Poetry Productions. For further information, call Scott Trendell, 479-0015.

15 -- Wednesday 9:30 p.m.

Poetry and fiction reading from the B.C. anthology, with Dawnelle Loiselle, Sibbie O'Sullivan, Rose Solari and Barbara Anne Rice. $2 admission. dc space, 7th and E Streets NW. Call 347-4960.

16 -- Thursday 5-7 p.m.

Book party for Doug Hornig in honor of the publication of Waterman, at The Butler Did It, 2020 N. Charles St., Baltimore, Md. Call 301-547-8422 or 800-367-7302.

28 -- Tuesday 7:30 p.m.

Marijane Ricketts reads from her poetry at the Kensington Park Library, 4201 Knowles Ave., Kensington, Md. Call 897-0010.

30 -- Thursday 8 p.m.

Lecture and book signing by Archibald Cox. Sponsored by the Smithsonian Resident Associates. Admission $6 for members, $8 nonmembers. Baird Auditorium, Museum of Natural History, Constitution Ave. at 10th St. NW. Call 357-3030. SPECIAL NOTES:

Exhibit of 55 outstanding Shakespeare items in celebration of the Folger Shakespeare Library's 55th anniversary continues (through mid-August). Includes the first four folios of Shakespeare and two miniature sets. Open to the public, free of charge, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily. 201 E. Capitol St. SE. For further information, call 544-7077.

Poetry hotline: for a weekly listing of poetry readings in the area, call 291-POET.

The Smithsonian Resident Associate Program offers a variety of courses of literary interest, including a series of six "Evenings with America's Premiere Authors and Artists" beginning in July. For information call 357-3030.

The Literary Calendar appears monthly, the Sunday before the first day of each month. Send listings to Literary Calendar, The Washington Post Book World, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071. Only written material, with adequate information of forthcoming events, received on or before the 15th of each month will be considered.