Ode to Adobo (A Sonnet)*

[This is a photo of me and my daughter, Gabriela, slinging my homemade adobong manok at the first and only Adobofest in Seattle, summer 2013. I didn’t win, but I’m proud to say that DJ Sabzi from Blue Scholars voted mine as the best of the fest. Sarap!]


I rinse the chicken and put it in the wok

Soy, garlic, vinegar, and peppercorn

This national dish is my family rock

Other ones I’ve tried, I tend to scorn.


Bring to boil and then cook till done

And while you’re at it make the rice

It’s nearly ready—walk, don’t run

40 minutes will suffice


Broil the chicken pieces, reduce the sauce

To bring out the delicious flavor

You’re making adobo like a boss

Everyone will love for sure.


This is how my family makes adobo

Love, care, and tradition will always show.


*(I wrote this sonnet at a yoga + writing retreat on the Big Island of Hawai’i, circa 2016. No revisions made.)


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