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 December 27, 2014

When Dave calls from California to tell me his girlfriend is pregnant, it was an accident but she wants to keep it anyway, although Dave’s not so sure, he has his doubts— in fact, when he really thinks about it, not in this lifetime nor in any foreseeable lifetime does he see himself actually becoming... Read more »

The Writer’s Almanac for December 26, 2014

Justine called on Christmas day to say she was thinking of killing herself. I said, “We’re in the middle of opening presents, Justine. Could you possibly call back later, that is, if you’re still alive.” She was furious with me and called me all sorts of names which I refuse to dignify by repeating them.... Read more »

The Writer’s Almanac for December 25, 2014

Music I love—but never strain Could kindle raptures so divine, So grief assuage, so conquer pain, And rouse this pensive heart of mine— As that we hear on Christmas morn, Upon the wintry breezes borne. Though Darkness still her empire keep, And hours must pass, ere morning break; From troubled dreams, or slumbers deep, That... Read more »

The Writer’s Almanac for December 24, 2014

The sun came up chased by dogs Across a field of snow. As they passed the pile of broken logs Frost fluttered in the air Between the birch trees Standing in that spot exactly Where the ridge becomes a hill. In another thousand years Sky and woods and land Will have come to be there,... Read more »

The Writer’s Almanac for December 23, 2014

I Sometimes, riding in a car, in Wisconsin Or Illinois, you notice those dark telephone poles One by one lift themselves out of the fence line And slowly leap on the gray sky — And past them, the snowy fields. II The darkness drifts down like snow on the picked cornfields In Wisconsin: and on... Read more »

The Writer’s Almanac for December 22, 2014

What is this life if, full of care We have no time to stand and stare. No time to stand beneath the boughs And stare as long as sheep or cows. No time to see, when woods we pass, Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass. No time to see, in broad daylight, Streams full... Read more »