The Writer's Almanac
Each day, Garrison Keillor reads a poem and relates stories of significant events touching literary history.
How like a winter hath my absence been From thee, the pleasure of the fleeting year! What freezings have I felt, what dark days seen! What old December’s bareness everywhere! And yet this time remov’d was summer’s time, The teeming autumn, big with rich increase, Bearing the wanton burthen of the prime, Like widow’d wombs... Read more »
“When can we have cake?” she wants to know. And patiently we explain: when dinner’s finished. Someone wants seconds; and wouldn’t she like to try, while she’s waiting, a healthful lettuce leaf? The birthday girl can’t hide her grief— worse, everybody laughs. That makes her sink two rabbity, gapped teeth, acquired this year, into a... Read more »
A gaggle of geese return to our street each winter while migrating from one place to another. They arrive in January, around my husband’s birthday, and I am surprised to find them behind our house, honking like cab drivers in traffic. Most leave with babies but one pair can’t manage to have any; I’ve watched... Read more »
I walk six blocks to the park. Hoarfrost and fog and ten below zero, A full twelve inches of snow. No one believes in the mysteries Anymore, but still once or twice Every year this will happen: Hoarfrost and fog and snow all at once. I don’t often notice my breath, But here I am... Read more »
While we are gone, our neighbor finds a long-dead buck in our shed, steeped in snow and wood. A broken leg took him down and he found refuge. The deer that had wandered the hills, had run in front of a car. This is the story we make up to understand how he got there.... Read more »
I remember our breath in the icy air and how the northern lights gathered in a haze at the horizon, spread up past the water tower then vanished into the dark. I remember that January night in North Dakota: We left the dance, the hoods of our dads’ air force parkas zipped tight, our bare... Read more »