Ode to Ashley

I read a decade or so back that if you were to add up all of the jobs that a mother does over the course of a day, she would be earning an annual salary of $512,000. These occupations include: wife, partner, cook, nanny, cleaner, teacher, chauffeur, nurse, secretary and about 14 other jobs. Unbelievable but true. Happy Mother’s Day! Well, I have this and more. So, here is my “Ode to Ashley,” wife of 9 years and the mother of my daughters:
I have read all kinds of poetry,
And have been mesmerized by lines I’ve read.
I have viewed the wondrous symmetry
Of timeless pyramids and pharaohs dead.
But all such wonder pales with Ashley.
I have seen the grace of royalty,
And aged veterans who barely stand,
I have been shown the path of loyalty
By Mom, John, Gene…quiet not grand.
Though of these things, I have learned as much from Ashley.
I have opened bellies in those who wouldn’t recover,
And stabbed amoebic livers to drain and mend.
Watched feverish babies with typhoid die with mothers,
And I have loved and lost; got up and loved again.
Yet, about life, I have gleaned as much from Ashley.
I have seen the exquisite beauty of Vasari,
Heard Kovacevich, Richter, Miles and Coltrane.
For hours, walked the Hagia Sophia with Compari,
And surfed some beautiful green walls in rain.
But such beauty holds no candle to Ashley.
There is a special majesty in life,
But often hard to see from day to day.
But, if lucky in life, you may meet Ashley,
And see the spectrum of its beauty, its glorious array.