The Writer's Almanac
Each day, Garrison Keillor reads a poem and relates stories of significant events touching literary history.
During World War II, Grandma Shorba handed plates of bread and meat to strangers who asked for work in exchange for food. After chopping wood and mending fences, the lean, stoop-shouldered men went on their way. “May God watch over them,” Grandma said. I was glad I didn’t have to follow them down the long... Read more »
A cricket chirps in the grass. Another cricket, all ears, joins him. Now there are two. Up above, birds shriek like drunken gods, the air is atizzy with the melodrama of what is about to be. The two crickets eye each other out of the corner of their cricket eyes. Each desires something the other... Read more »
When I was younger it was plain to me I must make something of myself. Older now I walk back streets admiring the houses of the very poor: roof out of line with sides the yards cluttered with old chicken wire, ashes, furniture gone wrong; the fences and outhouses built of barrel staves and parts... Read more »
My parrot is emerald green, His tail feathers, marine. He bears an orange half-moon Over his ivory beak. He must be believed to be seen, This bird from a Rousseau wood. When the urge is on him to speak, He becomes too true to be good. He uses his beak like a hook To lift... Read more »
Oh, what a weak sticker, you groan, as the batter pops out to the infield. We’re propped up in two beds—mine’s electric, with crib sides, rented to ease eleven broken ribs — watching the Red Sox, who are in the cellar and dozing between Demerol and errors. You yawn, the resident optimist no family should... Read more »
At the foot of the cliff, the sea is taking back what it left there long ago, and the landowners have made a barricade of three old cars between low and high tide and loaded them with so many river stones, they’ve been weighed down below their springs, below their shock absorbers. The waves are... Read more »