Sampsonia at Night–Shaheen Dil

-on a water color, by Peggi Habets

Whatever else may come,
the lamplights’ frosted glow
will burn upon this empty street,
trucks parked against the black curb
will never stir
with headlights shining,
their signals will not blink
as if to say: “My turn now,
my turn to skid off this dark frame
into the pink and purple night.”

Elsewhere the world may churn,
workers strike, and gunsights aim,
whatever links may form and fail,
this sky will never fade to gray,
this blackness will not yield to light,
these structures will still stand,
windows shut against the cold
of endless night, and dreamless sleep
still fall upon the lavender blue haze
of Sampsonia blooming by night.

Figurative and Cityscape Paintings

Shaheen Dil
was born in Dhaka, Bangladesh, but currently lives in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Her
poems have been published or are forthcoming in The Critical Quarterly, Four Quarters, The
Journal of South Asian Literature
, The Pittsburgh Quarterly, Golden Streetcar, Rune, Passager,
and Gyroscope Review, among others. Her poem, “River at Night” won Honorable Mention in
the Passager 2021 poetry contest. Her work has appeared in two anthologies: Poetry Chain:
An Anthology of New Verse
and Waiting for you to Speak. Shaheen’s first book of Poetry, Acts
of Deference,
was published in 2016 by Fakel Publishing House in Sofia, Bulgaria.