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Taking Stock of Woodstock

How that concert forty years ago impacted society; PLUS, My Big Fat Greek Name

by Greg Asimakoupoulos
August 14, 2009

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Taking Stock of Woodstock
Taking Stock of Woodstock
How that concert forty years ago impacted society
 
When the Beatles crossed that London road,
Dear Abby, what did you suppose
was happening in rural New York
this week in '69?
 
Could you have known that music fest
would make such news? Could you have guessed
that Woodstock would prove just as big
as landing on the moon?
 
Dear Abby, it was bigger yet!
As I look back and recollect,
it seems those days of rock and roll
would bruise our culture's soul.
 
It celebrated booze and drugs
and unclad couples locked in hugs.
The lyrics and the atmosphere
rebuffed authority. 
 
That weekend concert would portend
a values shift that would not end.
Since then, we are less civilized.
Our stock is wood not gold.
 
We are less cultured than before
and (though more wealthy) we are poor.
Free love has proved much costlier
than any could have guessed.

My Big Fat Greek Name
There's more to it than meets the eye

"It must be Greek!" I hear it said
when I pronounce my name.
"It is indeed!" I say with pride.
"Like the Olympic flame!"

A fourteen letter curtain call
all lined up in a row.
Somebody bought too many vowels
from Vanna long ago.

But Wheel of Fortune jokes aside,
I love my Grecian name.
It calls to mind my loving clan
when life can leave me drained.

I say it slowly and it helps.
Awesome-ah-COPE-ah-less.
This awesome mantra helps me cope
with major stress (or less).

My neighbors are the Crowes and Bones,
the Beattys and the Browns.
In short I claim a treasured gift;
the longest name in town.

But did you know the following?
I used to be a Smith.
My Papou took an alias.
It's true! That's not a myth.

Haralambos chose Harry K.
to be his new first name.
And Smith instead of Asima...
Good grief. Had he no shame?

But gratefully that all got fixed.
In Nineteen-sixty-nine
a judge's gavel gave us back
the name that now is mine.

* on August 13, 1969 the Edwin Smith Family of Wenatchee, Washington became the Edwin Asimakoupoulos Family. This week marks the 40th anniversary of a change of name that literally changed my life. And now you know "the rest of the story."

 Check out http://wenatcheeworld.com/article/20090813/NEIGHBORS/708139948

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PO BOOKS BY GREG ASIMAKOUPOULOS
Sunday Rhymes & Reasons
Published June 4, 2009

Sunday Rhymes and Reasons is a compilation of inspirational poetry by America's pastor/poet laureate, Greg Asimakoupoulos. In this, his third volume of poetry, Pastor Greg paints word pictures that portray both the struggle and fulfillment that define a life of faith. His repertoire of rhymes celebrate rite-of-passage occasions like birth, baptism, marriage and death as well as the major holidays of the church and culture. It is a volume that illustrates the poet's love of words and of popular culture. The author dips his brush into a paint box of hubris, humor and honesty.

"Gloria and I have been encouraged by word pictures from Greg's pen that have celebrated both our ministry and God's presence in our world."Bill Gaither, Gospel music composer/performer

"Gifted poet Greg Asimakoupoulos is a dear friend of our family. His poetry blesses, comforts, entertains, and provides inspiration for every season of life."Natalie Grant, singer/songwriter/recording artist

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by Hal Evan Caplan.

A father learns from the wisdom of his toddler.

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