The Writer's Almanac

Each day, Garrison Keillor reads a poem and relates stories of significant events touching literary history.

Recent Episodes

After the Opera by Richard Schiffman | Friday, October 06, 2017 | The Writer's Almanac with Garrison Keillor

The curtain parts one last time and the ones who killed and were killed, who loved inordinately, who went berserk, were flayed alive, descended to Hades, raged, wept, schemed— victims and victimizers alike— smile and nod and graciously bow. So glad it’s finally over, they stride off suddenly a bit ridiculous in their overwrought costumes.... Read more »

Some Advice for Clearing Brush by Jeff Coomer | Thursday, October 05, 2017 | The Writer's Almanac with Garrison Keillor

Walk noisily to declare your presence. The rabbits and deer will leave as soon as they hear you coming, but the snakes need time to process your intentions. Take a moment to be certain of what you’re cutting. Many stems look alike down close to the ground, especially when they’re young. Look up occasionally. Don’t... Read more »

Lives of the Great Composers by Dana Gioia | Tuesday, October 03, 2017 | The Writer's Almanac with Garrison Keillor

Herr Bruckner often wandered into church to join the mourners at a funeral. The relatives of Berlioz were horrified. “Such harmony,” quoth Shakespeare, “is in immortal souls …. We cannot hear it.” But the radio is playing, and outside rain splashes to the pavement. Now and then the broadcast fails. On nights like these Schumann... Read more »