The Fourth River

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Essay: “Senses of Pittsburgh”

By on March 31, 2017

This is a collaboratively written essay by Pittsburgh fifth-graders in response to “Senses of South Arm,” by 5th graders in Tasmania, Australia   By Grade 5-1, Pittsburgh Colfax Elementary   In the morning the sun stretches its arms to me.

Tributaries: “My Horticulture”

By on March 29, 2017

By Bruce Robinson   ***   Recent work by Bruce Robinson appears in Yo-NewYork!, Pittsburgh Poetry Houses, enclave, and Mobius.

Poem: “I survived the summer,” by Jess Feldman

By on March 24, 2017

From Issue 13 Nominated for Pushcart Prize, 2016   Can I share this happiness with you? Meat on a spit, a trashcan full of yellow rice, this Chiweenie takes a shit by its stroller. All I want is everything on

Tributaries: “Stable”

By on March 22, 2017

By Karen McDermott   Standing on moldy straw among palominos cream and white; the rain detains me here. Dripping thatch like the tapping of a schoolmaster’s fingers correcting my impatience returning my attention to the lesson of the day: the

Essay: “Senses of South Arm”

By on March 17, 2017

A collaboratively-written meditation on place from Issue 14, Juvenescence By ‘Waratah’ – Grade 5/6 South Arm Primary School, Australia   In the dawn, you can hear birds as you’re waking. It’s so quiet you can hear the trees bristling together.

Tributaries: “Last Chance”

By on March 15, 2017

By Sue Repko I turned off Route 30 in Duncan, Nebraska to see the Platte River, but it was practically all dried up. It was the end of August, and it had depressed me. I’d expected water, life. So I

Tributaries: “Play, with Foreign Object”

By on March 7, 2017

by Jen Karetnick   The octopus found a coconut, hollow and halved like a locket, dropped into its world. A chair waiting for its occupant, the shell rocked on the ocean floor, inviting as tea. The octopus lowered its mantle

Tributaries: “Mindfulness”

By on March 1, 2017

By Joan Moritz   Frost pays attention to everything. It is curious about each bump and crevice of a roof tile, fascinated by the folds of a winter flower, every vein and serration, the edge of a broken petal no

Where Neighbors Come Together: Envision Downtown’s Vision for Pittsburgh’s Urban Spaces

By on February 27, 2017

By Alyssa Guelcher, Assistant Editor, The Fourth River   Society often takes a rigid, utilitarian approach to urban space, maximizing the efficiency of each square foot so that it contributes to the overall function of the city. This is perhaps

Tributaries: “The Smell of Rain”

By on February 22, 2017

By Diane Payne   The two babies, twin sisters, lie next to each other wearing matching pink satin robes and stocking caps. They were alive hours, maybe minutes, maybe not at all. The parents, my neighbors, dressed their daughters for