Kenny Rogers' mom passed away in 1991, but her loving son is paying tribute to her legacy this Mother's Day.

Rogers tells Billboard that his mother, Lucille, was always one of his staunchest supporters. "She always knew how to say a lot in a few words — many times illustrating a lesson or offering a way to look at life that was so valuable. She has been a source of strength for me throughout my life," he reflects.

The country icon is particularly proud of the fact that his mother lived to witness his biggest successes, after his solo country career exploded in the 1970s. "It was huge because my dad saw my First Edition success, but he didn't see my individual success; my mom saw both," he shares. "When I started doing really well, I bought my mom her own bus, and she had her own driver. She would call him and say, 'Alan, I'm ready to go!' and he would come down to Crockett, Texas, and pick her up. She could have probably done it in a car, but she just loved that bus."

Rogers was so close to Lucille that he wrote her a very special poem in the 1980s, to express how strongly he felt about their special bond. That poem was titled "How Long Has It Been?"

"I just felt that it was something that most of us take for granted — that our parents know how much we love them," he explains. "I feel that sometimes it's important for you to say it — that it can have much more value than just thinking about it. My mom was a very special lady and a very big part of my life and my success. I wanted to let her know that I cared about her at that level."

Rogers has shared the poem for the first time publicly to remember his mom this Mother's Day. Take a look at the first verse below, and click on the button to read the rest of his moving tribute.

How long has it been since you kissed your mother?
How long since you held her hand?
How long since you took the time and the trouble
To show her how straight you stand?
How long has it been since you've kissed her cheeks?
How long since you made her proud?

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