Family Snapshot by Heather L. Kelly.
Made in 2020. Artist book / book art.
Cover: construction paper
Interior: paper, stickers, photo corners
Content: poem by Heather L. Kelly
Each letter of the alphabet is a character! This poem describes each character as if looking at a family photograph.
A is hard of hearing. She’s got a solid build,
balanced, good frame. She’s ambitious;
best on tests, top of the list.
B looks bloated. One minute he’s all zen
doing nothing, the next he’s buzzing around.
Obsessed with body parts.
C is charming and creative.
A constant consonant, cursive curls rolling waves.
C’s been celibate for centuries.
Dapper daredevil, D delights in diving into discussions.
Doesn’t demand, downplays directives.
D enjoys dressing for dinner.
Eloquent E is educated, an MDMA.
Excellent at entries and exits. Reclining, she’s trident.
The most engaged family member, a connector.
Older brother to E, F has a bad reputation.
Off the cuff, gets into trouble with U.
You’d think he has feathers, he’s always flashing the bird.
G is astonished.
A gregarious gal, she hosts our get-togethers.
Everyone smiles when they say her name.
H is a PR pro representing hospitals.
Tight with T, S, and C, she can also be shy,
hiding among gherkins and rhinos.
I is the most narcissistic family member,
trying to be first in any sentence. He resents
that many phrases don’t include him.
J is the joker, jumpy as a bird.
A smoker “for medical purposes,”
a smiley face becomes his hook in text emails.
Logical K, married to O (together a knockout),
she is potassium in disguise, has a dark side.
She’s the black in printer ink.
The twelfth member of the family, L is 50.
Sometimes crosses himself and fills a pound.
You can hear him singing, with A, aloud.
M is missing.
No one likes N. (So negative.)
O is in the orange outfit. Terrible poet.
P is pugnacious. Starring in a tongue twister
went to his head.
Q the instigator, the starter, always on time,
a line dance leader, quintessentially questioning.
And R is a real rogue. Rolls like waves, revs and growls.
S settled in Mississippi and Mississauga.
Her body a stringed instrument,
she isn’t straight. She’s sibling to an ampersand.
T is detail-oriented. Always cross.
U is a hulking bulk, an undertaker.
More comfortable in the UK than the US,
appearing in armour and harbours.
V is so sexy. Vroom! A voracious Venus.
All soft curves in her cursive,
has been known to stand on a point.
W is the family matriarch. She is balanced.
A wide woman. Has answers to the 5 basics.
But turn her upside down and
she becomes someone else.
That’s the X.
(This picture is from before the breakup.)
Y always questions things.
A bit of a drinker, she can hold her martinis.
Now she’s jet-set, representing Canadian cities.
Zed is the hipster. Asymmetrically zippered,
jokes his identity is in a wrist-flick finger snap.
An artist and writer, leads eyes across the page.