"Jestem w małym mieście."
Translation:I am in a small city.
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It's regular alternation of a stem. "Miasto" belongs to III group of declension of neuter nouns. Look at "miejscownik" (locative):
Alternation occurs according to this table: bit.ly/21H2hPE
The locative ending contains a palatalising element (something that shifts the pronunciation towards the center of the mouth), let's write it <-ie> (the being the "palataliser"), it affects the /t/ which becomes a palatalised /t/, in writing , but /s/ then has to be palatalised as well, <ś> in writing, and even the vowel is affected (closer thanks to the palatalisation, so we have , not to be mixed up with (a derivative of ),
The derivation of works as follows: + <-ice> (there's the palatalising again), so we get palatalised /t/ and /s/ again and the vowel closing: in old Polish (the palatalising element does not materialise as a segment). This is difficult to pronounce, esp. due to the <ćc> clash, so again there is assimilation from right to left: <ć> becomes and <ś> depalatalises to , but the idea of palatalisation is kept before as a semivowel /j/ before the /s/. (Do not get confused by the bracketing: denotes a graphemic representation, /t/ represents phonemes.)
It looks confusing, but is actually quite regular.