Amy L. Pabalan

Amy L. Pabalan was made and delivered in San Francisco, with original parts from the Philippines. Forged in Daly City fog, she started writing in the fifth grade when she  discovered a book of Langston Hughes’ work in the school library. 

After receiving a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from San Jose State University, she worked as a newspaper copy editor in Southern California. She returned to her childhood home with her husband to be caregivers for her mother and father, who passed away respectively in 2017 and 2020. 

Amy continues to dream, write and craft. Not necessarily in that order.

Poems on Belonging

BOXES

I’m drowning in clutter
Five decades in the making
Boxes and boxes of stuff
And you’re not here
To tell me what to do

Unused yarn and kitchenware
   mock me as I say
   “I can still use this!”

But what about

Undated pictures of holiday tables
   filled with your dishes
Greeting cards bound by 
   disintegrating rubber bands
   loved received over the years
   over and over
Prayer cards of saints 
   frayed at the edges
   surely memorized from whispering
   over and over

I put everything back
   minus the junk mail, printouts of email jokes,
   and high blood pressure readings
Mentally labeling each box: 
Hold for now


CAMERA ROLL

Scrolling
as if
I’ll find more
I 
know exactly
when there are
no more new 
pictures of
you.

Copyright © 2022 by Amy L. Pabalan. Used with permission of the author.