Current Issue

Letter from the Poetry Editor

Each year, Philadelphia Stories celebrates the memory of poet Sandy Crimmins whose poem “Spring” appeared in our first issue.

Milk Sickness: A Mother Worries as Her Children Sleep

sometimes I see snakes in a milk pail noisy tumbles of coils & scales

Feeding My Father Pudding While Watching Bonanza

All any relationship boils down to is are you willing to do this for me or aren’t you? Hoss and tapioca

Lukens Steel, Coatesville, Pennsylvania

And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. The steel mill that sprawled across the city reached toward the sky with the roofs of each wing.

How to Ride a Train in the Andes

In a coastal sweatland shanty town, I vowed to clamber onto the corrugated steel roof of a train car, to throw my life

On Wassily Kandinsky’s Painting: “Little Painting in Yellow”

Just before the Great War, Kandinsky took time to paint something yellow, something little, something that looked like nothing anyone had ever seen.


We’re twenty, nude, everything firm and responsive to the touch, soft breeze cool on our flanks as the pool

Mother Explains

Where your brother went, a river met him at the shadow’s edge, a river he walked on


The zebrafish’s neon stripes and globe eyes flash in LEDs as our bodies marble in reply with squiggles of phosphorus.

On the Solitary Death of Uncle Mike

You better hope that you’re lucky enough to die outside like a tick-ridden raccoon, bloating and frozen in the first week of March,


Sam’s final aching breaths, and the silence between, woke Miri, and she rose from the tangled blankets she slept on beside his hospice cot to hold his hand until it went cold in hers.

End Times

I stare at my therapist’s coffee cup the entire time she talks to me about the importance of communicating.

A Non-Fairy Tale

My daughter fell under the spell of fairy tales early on when, as a toddler, she watched Lady and the Tramp for the first time on a VHS tape that I’d rented at a Delaware County Blockbuster while she fought a stomach bug. She’d enjoyed the movie so much that we gifted her with Lady [...]