The Writer's Almanac
Each day, Garrison Keillor reads a poem and relates stories of significant events touching literary history.
In the old joke, the marriage counselor tells the couple who never talks anymore to go to a jazz club because at a jazz club everyone talks during the bass solo. But of course, no one starts talking just because of a bass solo or any other solo for that matter. The quieter bass solo... Read more »
Early morning, everything damp all through. Cars go by. A ripping sound of tires through water. For two days the air Has smelled like salamanders. The little lake on the edge of town hidden in fog, Its cattails and island gone. All through the gloom of the dark week Bright leaves have been dropping From... Read more »
Night and day seize the day, also the night — a handful of water to grasp. The moon shines off the mountain snow where grizzlies look for a place for the winter’s sleep and birth. I just ate the year’s last tomato in the year’s fatal whirl. This is mid-October, apple time. I picked them... Read more »
It was like listening to the record of a symphony before you knew anything at all about the music, what the instruments might sound like, look like, what portion of the orchestra each represented: there were only volumes and velocities, thickenings and thinnings, the winding cries of change that seemed to touch within you, through... Read more »
It’s 1945. The crops laid by in October if he was lucky, by Thanksgiving if not, my father would throw his hat into the threshing machine with the final shock of rice from the final field. That one moment of the year he was jubilant, cocky even, winning out over creditors and blackbirds and rot.... Read more »
Coming out of the theater surrounded by people in elegant clothes, jewelry, all the arias finished, no one able to hold the music inside for long, soon enough it’s gone, and it’s night in the city, it’s all neon and noise, the woman you’re with stops to adjust her shoe, leans her body against yours... Read more »