Thursday, August 30, 2007


I watch Gavin eat

Grass and hay and even garbage

Gavin’s a good eater

Gavin is a favorite of many readers! Among them, the head of the NICU at Lehigh Valley Hospital in Pennsylvania, who read his poem during an interview on Service Electric Cable TV. Children who we have read to at various libraries, book stores and day care facilities around the Lehigh Valley in PA as well as in North Carolina, always get a big laugh when we mention that Gavin eats also opens up the door to talk to the kids about what they like to eat and if they are good eaters (like Gavin). Imagine a silly little 3 line children's poem starting a conversation about kid's nutrition!

Saturday, August 18, 2007


Shelby chases sheep
He gets them all together
So they all can play

The drawing of Shelby is a compilation of the Shelty dogs with whom I spent my childhood... and my parent's current Shelties, Elvis and Foxy. My first Shelty was named Bough Bough (yes, I named her myself when I was 2). Sugar bear, a collie / samoyed mix joined us when Bough was something of a senior girl. Sugar was my introduction to the northern breeds...which may explain the three Siberian Huskies who currently live with me! Later, we welcomed Paddington into the family. He was a sweet little Shelty puppy boy who someone had left chained to a tree in my Grandparent's neighborhood.

Shelties love to herd sheep...and cats and bunnies and anything else they can find to round up! When I was a child, Bough helped be capture my bunnies, Bonny and Clyde, on more than one occasion when they had escaped their hutch. I even remember her herding mice in the garage!

This little haiku (haicooo) poem brings back so many happy memories of my best childhood friends! I hope your children enjoy it as much as I do!

Friday, August 17, 2007

Fireguy Joe

Fire guy Joe is bright
He lights up his behind
We watch Joe at night

Fireguy Joe is named in honor of the husband of a friend of mine who works with me at Lehigh Valley Hospital. He is a firefighter for the City of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

Joe is incredibly brave and dedicated and we were thrilled to be able to honor him with our cute little bug!

Monday, August 13, 2007

Haicooo featured at library show

Painting for Children" An Invitational Exhibit of art by Children’s Book Illustrators (Aug 1 – Aug 31)*

**The Friends of the Pittsboro Memorial Library ( ) is thrilled to present a very special exhibit, *Painting for Children -* a celebration of play, whimsy, laughter and fun as seen through the eyes of North Carolina's talented Children's Book illustrators and authors through Aug. in the Reeves Gallery at the library, 158 West St., Pittsboro (542-3524). The exhibit may be viewed during Library hours (Mon 10-6, Tue10-8, Wed 10-6, Thu 10-6, Fri 10-6, Sat 9-5).

The invitational exhibit presents the work of twelve artists and writers, many of whom hold national recognition as some of the most talented illustrators and authors of children’s books. Others are just beginning this wonderful adventure.* *The Friends of the Pittsboro Memorial Library welcome author/illustrators- Clay Carmichael, Stacye Leanza, Pamela Pease, Leah Palmer Preiss, Sudie Rakusin, Miriam Sagasti; illustrators Kathryn Armstrong, Rebecca Guay, Jan Lawrence; and children’s book authors Forrest Greenslade, Louise Hawes, and Lavenia Holloway Womble.

The authors and illustrators* *have graciously agreed to read from their children’s books for this special library event Saturday, Aug. 25^th from 1pm to 3pm in the Reeves Auditorium. The Community is also invited to meet the artists and authors at the Pittsboro General Store Café from 3:30pm. to 5pm. The exhibit, the children’s story time event and the “Meet the Illustrators and Authors” book signing and reception is free and open to the public. Directions to The Pittsboro General Store Café are available at It is an easy walk from the library.

Sunday, August 12, 2007


Nicooo is our graphic portrayal of a newborn who requires special care. The baby bird symbolizes a helpless newborn. The philosophy of the doctors at the NICU at Lehigh Valley Hospital (LVH), where my daughter was born, is to care for the entire family while helping the newborn become well enough to leave the hospital. Can you imagine anything harder than going home while your infant must stay in the hospital? To read more about LVH and the reason behind our decision to donate the proceeds from Haicooo: Little Poems for Children to the NICU at LVH, read this CheckUp story.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

What is Haiku?

Haiku is a form of Japanese poetry, dating from the 19th century. A traditional haiku consists three lines of approximately 5, 7, and 5 phonetic units which generally correspond to the syllables of English. In our Haicooo, we don't even attempt to follow the elaborate rules of Haiku. We just use the basic form to tell little stories to little folk. For more information on real haiku, click here.

Now, what is Haicooo?
Haicooo are little haiku poems just for children! All haicooo poems have an accompanying drawing of a sweet animal to help develop a child's love of nature, art and poetry. It has long been my philosophy that a child who learns to love animals and treat them with kindness will be a child who shows empathy for other children as well. I also believe that they will grow into more caring and responsible adults. We can all learn a lot from animals as well as children!

Eweness gets lonesome
So she likes it in her flock
Where she has good friends

Eweness Loves Haiku For Children!

Friday, August 10, 2007


Frosty's* nose is cold
So she cuddles up with me
Now we both are warm

*Frosty was already an elderdog when she came to live with the Armstrong family. She is gone now, but her joy and love live on.

Frosty was the inspiration for the first Haicooo poem that was written. She was our dog... although she was never officially our dog. She came to us from a shelter where her family has abandoned her at 12+ years of age...they were moving and couldn't keep her. No one wanted her. We certainly didn't need another dog, but we work with a husky rescue and it is up to us to help the ones that no one else wants. So we brought her home. From the moment she walked in the house, she knew she was staying! We kept saying "she's a foster dog", but she knew she was staying! Frosty lived with us for over two years until left us at 15. She was never officially adopted, but she was never anything but OUR dog!


Haicooo: Little Poems for Children is the first in a series of children's books written by Forrest Greenslade and illustrated by Kathryn Armstrong.

Haicooo: Little Poems for Children is the creation of Kathryn Armstrong and her father Forrest Greenslade. Kathryn is a communications designer and artist. Forrest is a writer and sculptor. Kathryn was creating a series of animal illustrations for a hospital pediatrics department, when Forrest just couldn't help himself and jotted down a silly haiku about one of them. Father and daughter agreed that this would be a great way to introduce children to the joy of poetry. Incidentally, Kathryn had a nearly one-year old daughter (Nicole Alexandra) at the time.

"We hope that parents, grand parents and friends will show these pictures and read these poems to small children, and use them to initiate a life-long engagement for kids with art and poetry. Hopefully, older children will read them themselves, and even write poems of their own. Please feel free to copy and share them with friends and family."

Proceeds from the sale of Haicooo benefit the NICU at Lehigh Valley Hospital. You can buy our Haicooo book at

Stop back often to see new poems and to preview Haicooo Goes to the Zooo.