The Writer's Almanac

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

Recent Episodes

The Writer’s Almanac for February 15, 2015

Watching the hands of my son kneading challah dough on the maple cutting board in my kitchen, a memory rises of my mother bending over our kitchen table in Flatbush, pressing, stretching, folding flour, water, eggs into a living elastic. Sometimes in my dreams, Mom appears, whispers of her mother in her kitchen in Zurawno... Read more »

The Writer’s Almanac for February 14, 2015

Not a red rose or a satin heart. I give you an onion. It is a moon wrapped in brown paper. It promises light like the careful undressing of love. Here. It will blind you with tears like a lover. It will make your reflection a wobbling photo of grief. I am trying to be... Read more »

The Writer’s Almanac for February 13, 2015

The elm tree is our highest mountain peak; A five-foot drop a valley, so to speak. A man’s head is an eminence upon A field of barley spread beneath the sun. Horizons have no strangeness to the eye. Our feet are sometimes level with the sky, When we are walking on a treeless plain, With... Read more »

The Writer’s Almanac for February 12, 2015

There’s a tractor in the doorway of a church in Red Wing, Nebraska, in a coat of mud and straw that drags the floor. A broken plow sprawls beggarlike behind it on some planks that make a sort of roadway up the steps. The steeple’s gone. A black tar-paper scar that lightning might have made... Read more »

The Writer’s Almanac for February 11, 2015

Moonlight fills the laurels Like music. The moonlit Air does not move. Your white Face moves towards my face. Voluptuous sorrow Holds us like a cobweb Like a song, a perfume, the moonlight. Your hair falls and holds our faces. Your lips curl into mine. Your tongue enters my mouth. A bat flies through the... Read more »

The Writer’s Almanac for February 10, 2015

Life is absurd. A man can count on that. After the great triumph, you’re left standing alone, Standing on the corner, holding your hat, Trying to call a friend on your cell phone. Men my age are arrested for public exposure Who only needed to take a leak in the bushes. They didn’t run through... Read more »