The Writer's Almanac
Each day, Garrison Keillor reads a poem and relates stories of significant events touching literary history.
Fair daffodils, we weep to see You haste away so soon: As yet the early-rising sun Has not attained his noon Stay, stay, Until the hasting day Has run But to the evensong; And, having prayed together, we Will go with you along. We have short time to stay as you; We have as short... Read more »
Serene, I fold my hands and wait, Nor care for wind nor tide nor sea; I rave no more ‘gainst time or fate, For lo! my own shall come to me. I stay my haste, I make delays— For what avails this eager pace? I stand amid the eternal ways And what is mine shall... Read more »
My mother cooked as drudgery the same fifteen dishes round and round like a donkey bound to a millstone grinding dust. My mother baked as a dance, the flour falling from the sifter in a rain of fine white pollen. The sugar was sweet snow. The dough beneath her palms was the warm flesh of... Read more »
She wore a new ‘terra-cotta’ dress, And we stayed, because of the pelting storm, Within the hansom’s dry recess, Though the horse had stopped; yea, motionless We sat on, snug and warm. Then the downpour ceased, to my sharp sad pain And the glass that had screened our forms before Flew up, and out she... Read more »
The quality of mercy is not strained; It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven Upon the place beneath: it is twice blest,— It blesseth him that gives and him that takes: ‘Tis mightiest in the mightiest; it becomes The thronèd monarch better than his crown: His sceptre shows the force of temporal power, The... Read more »
There was a time when meadow, grove, and stream, The earth, and every common sight To me did seem Apparell’d in celestial light, The glory and the freshness of a dream. It is not now as it has been of yore;— Turn wheresoe’er I may, By night or day, The things which I have seen... Read more »