Phillis Ideal's stories have been published by Pure Slush Books, Fictionaut, Santa Fe Literary Review, and Eunola Review.

PAINTING WITH BIG MAMA

I still see Big Mama leaning over her garden to pick a zinnia to put in her still life. Her old pink slip, hanging diagonally a foot under her hiked up, ragged, stained dress, half covered by her paint smock, which matched her white, faux fur, bedroom slippers, both splotched with oil paint.

Read More...

DAVID AND BIG BIRD

Hot sweaty bodies slam into each other to get aboard the overflowing subway car.  I struggle to wedge myself though the sliding doors, bracing for more bodies to press against mine.

Read More...

TRAVELERS

I can’t count the numbers of trips I’ve made from New York City to Santa Fe, New Mexico, the state where I grew up and own a home. Each trip adds to the dread, which, like clockwork, I start to feel several days before each leg of the roundtrip.

Read More...

TINKLER MAN

As the light changed and exhaustion set in, Suzy and Molly batted back and forth one more knock knock joke to avoid going home. They were cutting their teeth on life beyond their families, and both were delighted to have their first best friend.

Read More...

STUFF

Art books, paintings, antique chairs, marble tables, full length gold gilded mirrors, oriental rugs, tapestries, a Louis XVI painted French armoire, a wrought iron Deco coffee table, flat ware, silver flasks, mantel lamps, iron gates, a silk settee, theater seats, a Deco gas stove, 1950’s retro chrome kitchen table and chairs, a Rococo walnut king bed and much more filled three storage units and a friend’s empty trailer. This was Anthony’s inheritance from a house where he and his crazy sister had grown up in Scarsdale, NY.

Read More...

JUMP START

“I am supposed to meet my nephew, Johnnie, to move my van from in front of his dad’s house in New Jersey. I don’t know what to do. I need to catch the 11:30 train, but what is the difference between doing it today or tomorrow?

Read More...

CROSSED

Like a sleepwalker – lost in the abyss of an unresolved painting – I hit the pavement to escape my own turmoil. Working on this painting for three days, nothing was looking back at me and I had really had it.

Read More...

THE GLASS BOWL

One of the classic signs of spring in New York is the lines get longer outside ice cream shops, and the streets become crowded with people walking, skateboarding, and window shopping. The layers of down jackets, scarves, silk underwear, socks, boots and paraphernalia worn to endure the cold are put aside.

Read More...

BROKEN

I parked, stepped onto the curb and slipped on the wet pavement. My purse went flying, tossing its contents onto the concrete and cracking my powder compact.

Read More...

HEART

It was cold and Alice was bundled up in her black parka, with the hood covering her ears. She sipped coffee. The Sunburst Café was always freezing in the winter, as the locals lined up for coffee and left the door open.

Read More...

SLAMMER

“Please, please grant me probation and a deferred sentence with no time behind these walls. I have never had a driving ticket before. NOW one Margarita and a DUI. Never again!”

Read More...

INTERRUPTION

As soon as he neared his neighborhood newsstand, handed over the exact change and had The New York Times in his hand, Irving switched from feeling he had no choices, to feeling he had a future.

Read More...

VISITATION

We sat up in bed. It's two o'clock in the morning. Blinding circular flashlight beams probe through the half pulled shades.

Read More...