Wednesdays for Wives: Half A Wife


I wanted something light and fun this week. Here’s a poem my Grandma wrote.

Half a Wife

By Cleo B. Awald

Half A Wife?

You Bet!

Half a Wife

Is better than none.

Half in the morning,

Half at night.

If you can’t have

A whole one,

Half is all right!

I guess this is Grandma’s ode to the working wife. But even stay-at-home moms can feel split in half between their children and their husbands some days.

My grandma spent the first half of her life working along side her husband on their Indiana farm and raising four children. My grandpa bought chickens for her to raise so she would have something to do, or so the story goes. Something to do? As if she didn’t have enough to do already! My mom remembers riding around in the car with my grandmother as she delivered eggs to local grocery stores.

Grandma was only in her 50’s when my grandpa died from Lou Gehrig’s disease. She went to college for the first time after that, and earned a nursing degree. She worked as a nurse until she retired.

She didn’t start writing poetry until she was in her 70’s, at least none of us were aware it until then. For a few years, every time I received a letter or card from her, she would enclose a one or two of her latest poems. Her health has faltered over the last year, and I’m not sure if she’s still writing anymore. I cherish my collection of poems from our family poet-in-residence.

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