O What a Luxury
(A poem rejected by every serious journal I submitted it to, from The New Yorker on down, and yet it has given pleasure to thousands of people who heard me recite it, including women, who tend to resist the poem until the line about aiming up at the stars and then they fall apart. This tells me that sensitivity is singular and vulgarity is plural.)

O what a luxury it be
What pleasure O what perfect bliss
So ordinary and yet chic
To pee to piss to take a leak

To feel your bladder just go free
And open like the Mighty Miss
And all your cares go down the creek
To pee to piss to take a leak

For gentlemen of great physique
Who can hold water for one week
For ladies who one quarter-cup
Of tea can fill completely up
For folks in urinalysis
For little kids just learning this
For Viennese or Swiss or Greek
For everyone it’s pretty great
To urinate.

Women are quite circumspect
But men can piss with great effect
With terrible hydraulic force
Can make a stream or change its course
Can put out fires or cigarettes
And sometimes, laying down our bets,
Late at night outside the bars
We like to aim up at the stars.

O yes for men its much more grand
Women sit or squat
We stand
And hold the fellow in our hand
And proudly watch the golden arc
Adjust the range and make our mark
On stones and posts for rival men
To smell and not come back again.

Writing

Books

A complete lists of works, including sample excerpts

Columns

From the New York Times, Time magazine, and the complete Chicago Tribune syndicated columns

Prose

Stories from The New Yorker and other magazines and a few lectures

Sonnets

Sonnets of praise, some erotic, some lamentations, and some street sonnets

Verse

Poems on topics both serious and not-so-serious

Video

Videos from readings, interviews, solo shows and more

Radio

Albums

A complete list of radio and audiobook collections, with audio samples

Audio

Speeches, interviews, readings and other audio clips

Songs

Audio and lyrics for songs featured on A Prairie Home Companion.

The News from Lake Wobegon

The latest news and views from the little town where "all the women are strong, all the men are good looking, and all the children are above average"

A Prairie Home Companion

May 22, 2015

8:00 p.m.

Vienna, VA

A Prairie Home Companion — Friday — Wolf Trap

A live performance at the Filene Center at Wolf Trap

May 30, 2015

5:45 p.m.

Detroit, MI

A Prairie Home Companion — Detroit

A live broadcast performance from the Fox Theatre

June 6, 2015

5:45 p.m.

Canandaigua, NY

A Prairie Home Companion — Canandaigua, NY

A live broadcast performance from the CMAC Constellation Brands – Marvin Sands Performing Arts Center

June 13, 2015

2:45 p.m.

Woodinville, WA

A Prairie Home Companion — Woodinville, WA

A live broadcast performance from the Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery

June 20, 2015

4:45 p.m.

Highland Park, IL

A Prairie Home Companion — Highland Park, IL

A live broadcast performance from the Ravinia Festival Pavilion

(A poem rejected by every serious journal I submitted it to, from The New Yorker on down, and yet it has given pleasure to thousands of people who heard me recite it, including women, who tend to resist the poem until the line about aiming up at the stars and then they fall apart. This tells me that sensitivity is singular and vulgarity is plural.)

O what a luxury it be
What pleasure O what perfect bliss
So ordinary and yet chic
To pee to piss to take a leak

To feel your bladder just go free
And open like the Mighty Miss
And all your cares go down the creek
To pee to piss to take a leak

For gentlemen of great physique
Who can hold water for one week
For ladies who one quarter-cup
Of tea can fill completely up
For folks in urinalysis
For little kids just learning this
For Viennese or Swiss or Greek
For everyone it’s pretty great
To urinate.

Women are quite circumspect
But men can piss with great effect
With terrible hydraulic force
Can make a stream or change its course
Can put out fires or cigarettes
And sometimes, laying down our bets,
Late at night outside the bars
We like to aim up at the stars.

O yes for men its much more grand
Women sit or squat
We stand
And hold the fellow in our hand
And proudly watch the golden arc
Adjust the range and make our mark
On stones and posts for rival men
To smell and not come back again.

Writing

A Prairie Home Companion, 1974-2014

I never wanted to be known for longevity
But for brilliant, tragically interrupted brevity.
Immortality is all about brevity, dear heart.

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April

March and Lent and we march along on our spiritual journeys As winter hangs on and the world looks older and duller And then in the mail comes the spring seed catalogue from Gurney’s And suddenly there is life and audacious color And excitement rivaling Times Square or Las Vegas — Blue Lake, Early Fortune, […]

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The Keillor Reader — 2014

The Keillor Reader — 2014

The Keillor Reader collects the full range of Garrison Keillor’s work: monologues from A Prairie Home Companion, stories from The New Yorker and The Atlantic, excerpts from novels, newspaper columns, and pieces never before published.

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The Keillor Reader — Introduction

The Keillor Reader — Introduction

I started out with No. 2 pencil and pads of paper, then acquired an Underwood manual typewriter with a faint f and a misshapen O. You had to poke the keys hard to make an impression. I set it on a maple desk in my bedroom, which looked out onto a cornfield across the road, and I wrote stories about tortured loners who stood at a distance from the crowd and observed their comings and goings with envy tinged with contempt.

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Books — Chronological

A list of published works

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National Geographic: There’s No Place Like Home

When a man lives in one place for most of his life, he doesn’t need GPS. He is guided by memories of boyhood bike rides, the ever present Mississippi, and the undeniable power of rhubarb.

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I Come from Lake Wobegon

I Come from Lake Wobegon

Garrison describes growing up in Lake Wobegon.

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Summer in Lake Wobegon

Summer in Lake Wobegon

Garrison talks about summer in Lake Wobegon and a few of the town’s guiding principles.

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Cat, O Cat

Cat, O Cat

Garrison Keillor (with Rich Dworsky on piano) sings “Cat, O Cat”

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A Part-time Job in Radio

A Part-time Job in Radio

Garrison discusses his favorite parts of his “part-time job” as a radio host.

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Radio

The News from Lake Wobegon for May 16, 2015

“It’s been raining and chilly at night out there so people are way behind on lawn care, but the tulips and daffodils are in bloom.” The town re-examines its philosophy on lawn care, the Lutheran Church holds its church picnic, and the war between Pastor Haugen and his secretary Marlene intensifies, in a monologue from May 2014.

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The News from Lake Wobegon for May 9, 2015

“It’s been quiet except for the storms that came through. There was one Sunday morning and Tuesday morning and Wednesday most of the day, and one just a couple of days ago.” The Petersons’ ice-cream-stealing dog dies, Father Wilmer visits his newfound sisters, and garage sale season begins.

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The News from Lake Wobegon for May 2, 2015

“Getting warm up there, getting up into the 60s and even thinking about getting up into the 70s so it’s been very pleasant — and no snow fell this last week.” The town celebrates the 1st of May, and a few memories of post-prom parties at the Bunsens’ cabin.

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Dear You — 2015 Common Good Books Poetry Contest

On April 19, 2015, Garrison hosted the finale of the 3rd annual Common Good Books poetry contest and announced the winners, who each wrote a poem on the theme “Dear You.” Poet (and contest judge) Patricia Hampl was also on hand to share her thoughts on the winning pieces. Close to 1,000 poets submitted their […]

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The News from Lake Wobegon for April 25, 2015

“It’s been kind of cool, sunny but windy out there, and the other day a little snow fell, just a few flakes. We ignored it. We did not comment on it.” Bridal shower season arrives, Darlene invites three suitors to the Sidewinder Bar in Millet, and Arlene Bunsen counsels her goddaughter Charlotte against taking up the trombone.

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The News from Lake Wobegon for April 18, 2015

“It’s been warm and it’s getting warmer. It’s been warm and windy.” Clarence Bunsen observes Mrs. Rasmussen hanging her laundry out to dry, Eloise Krebsbach attends her daughter’s piano recital, and some of the local farmers spend a long weekend in Las Vegas.

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The News from Lake Wobegon for April 11, 2015

“It’s gotten warmer and the ice is now off the lake. It just happened suddenly one day and people all pointed it out to each other, even though everybody knew it, they enjoyed saying it.” The Whippets hold their first practice and add their first female player, Martha Hedlund learns more than she cared to know about her mother’s personal life, Pastor Liz counsels Kate Inqvist about an unplanned pregnancy, and Senator K. Thorvaldson turns up in Costa Rica during a 21-day cruise.

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The News from Lake Wobegon for April 4, 2015

“Spring has finally arrived and the crocuses are up and the flowers are up and there’s green grass and people are hanging their sheets out on the line, just for the smell of it, just for the beauty of it.” Donny Krebsbach ventures onto the lake in search of early spring ice fishing, Christopher Inqvist gets a summer job at Ralph’s Pretty Good Grocery, and thoughts on the importance of yard work, in a monologue from April 2013.

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The News from Lake Wobegon for March 28, 2015

“It snowed this last week. It was harmful, it was hurtful to people, and people suffered from it. They were angry at it.” The town attends the high school’s production of ‘Our Town,’ Sarah Peterson worries her parents by becoming successful, and Mavis investigates Vern’s past, in a monologue from May 2013.

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The News from Lake Wobegon for March 21, 2015

“We’re calling it spring there. It sort of seemed to be spring for a few hours here and a few hours there so that’s what people are saying when they run into each other on Main Street.” Spring arrives in Lake Wobegon, young people begin to go outside without jackets, and Lyle Janske runs the high school basketball concessions stand to take his mind off his son’s illness.

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A Prairie Home Companion
Schedule

May 22, 2015

8:00 p.m.

Vienna, VA

A Prairie Home Companion — Friday — Wolf Trap

A live performance at the Filene Center at Wolf Trap

May 30, 2015

5:45 p.m.

Detroit, MI

A Prairie Home Companion — Detroit

A live broadcast performance from the Fox Theatre

June 6, 2015

5:45 p.m.

Canandaigua, NY

A Prairie Home Companion — Canandaigua, NY

A live broadcast performance from the CMAC Constellation Brands – Marvin Sands Performing Arts Center

June 13, 2015

2:45 p.m.

Woodinville, WA

A Prairie Home Companion — Woodinville, WA

A live broadcast performance from the Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery

June 20, 2015

4:45 p.m.

Highland Park, IL

A Prairie Home Companion — Highland Park, IL

A live broadcast performance from the Ravinia Festival Pavilion

June 27, 2015

5:45 p.m.

Lenox, MA

A Prairie Home Companion — Tanglewood

A live broadcast performance from the Koussevitzky Music Shed at Tanglewood

July 4, 2015

4:45 p.m.

St. Paul, MN

A Prairie Home Companion — Saint Paul — Macalester College

A live broadcast performance from Macalester College

Press/Clips
The Late Late Show — 6/4/2014

The Late Late Show — 6/4/2014

Garrison visits The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson to discuss The Keillor Reader

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C-SPAN: 1999 Radio and Television Correspondents Dinner

C-SPAN: 1999 Radio and Television Correspondents Dinner

Garrison talks about civility in an address to the Radio and Television Correspondents Dinner in Washington D.C.

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CBS This Morning: 40 years of A Prairie Home Companion: Behind Garrison Keillor’s success

CBS This Morning: 40 years of A Prairie Home Companion: Behind Garrison Keillor’s success

Garrison chats with CBS This Morning about A Prairie Home Companion‘s 40th anniversary and his book The Keillor Reader

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AP: Keillor to celebrate 40 years on Lake Wobegon

AP: Keillor to celebrate 40 years on Lake Wobegon

Garrison discusses the 40th anniversary of A Prairie Home Companion in an interview with the Associated Press

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The Keillor Reader — Press

The Keillor Reader — Press

A few reviews and press mentions for The Keillor Reader

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A Prairie Home Companion 40th Anniversary: Let’s Have a Party

A Prairie Home Companion returns to the Macalester campus for an anniversary celebration with three days of music, comedy, food, and festivities, July 4-6th.

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Love Letters: The Second Annual Common Good Books Poetry Contest

Garrison and Common Good Books are sponsoring a poetry contest! Pour your love onto the page, shape it well, and mail your love letter to Common Good Books before April 15 — fame and fortune could be yours.

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The Daily Circuit — O, What a Luxury

Garrison talks poetry and O, What a Luxury with MPR’s Kerri Miller

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ABC: What Makes St. Paul So Great?

ABC: What Makes St. Paul So Great?

Garrison gives a tour of St. Paul during the 2008 Republican National Convention

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Time — 10 Questions for Garrison Keillor

Time — 10 Questions for Garrison Keillor

Garrison answers a few questions submitted by Time readers.

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