Mother Knows Best

A tribute to the poet’s mom who turned 80 this week

Robert Young
starred on TV
before my mom was old.
He played a father who knew best.
At least that’s what I’m told.

Those were the days
when dads were king.
Like Beaver Cleaver’s dad
or Ozzie Nelson…
or Ben Cartwright…
Their sons were lucky lads.

But what about
The Beaver’s mom?
Or Ricky’s?
Hoss’s too?
While dads are great,
there are some things
that only moms can do.

Like wipe your tears
when you fall down
and scrape your chubby knees
or say “God bless you” meaning it
each time you had to sneeze.

My mother
nursed me back to health
whenever I was sick.
She brought me juice
and comic books
and popsicles to lick.

She told me
that I was the best
when I was just okay.
But in her mind I really was
Her praises made my day.

She taught me
all about the Lord
and helped me understand
the pressures I would feel at school.
She helped me take a stand.

My mom has heart,
but also brains.
She helped me cram for tests.
And when I needed love advice,
it’s true, my mom knew best.

When I left home
and took a wife
She felt somehow replaced.
I know that it was hard for her.
I saw it in her face.

But bless her heart,
in time she saw
she had no need to fear.
I needed both. A wife and mom.
She smiled from ear to ear.

She’s one
creative grandmother.
My brother’s kids
and mine
love spending time
at Nana’s house
They think she’s quite divine.

When Dad got sick
and nearly died,
my mother made me proud.
She mustered courage,
modeled faith
and prayed for him out loud.

As time went by
and she slowed down,
my mom refused to stop.
This fashion plate
can still turn heads
and loves to thrift store shop.

At eighty,
this one who gave me birth
embraces each new day.
She journals what she did
each night
before she hits the hay.

Her name is Star.
Uncommon, yes?
That’s fine.
My mom’s unique.
She sparkles like
the jewels she wears
while cuddled with her Greek.

And so this tribute
to the Star
I proudly
call my mom.
Keep twinkling
and light my night
until God brings
your dawn.

*This poem is dedicated to my mother, Star Asimakoupoulos, who celebrated both her 80th birthday and 56th wedding anniversary this week.