I collect your last breath

in poetry; spin stale
air into letters into
words into stanzas;
weave that last hair
on your coat, no longer
worn, into a sentence;
and your finger prints, still
imprinted on that last glass,
I press into a full and

I collect your last breath
written on a train home from London, Elou Carroll 2014

The Gilbert Collection

As the deadline looms near, I thought I would do a quick entry about The Gilbert Collection, a collection of poetry being published by the Society of Young Publishers (in which I am a committee member). Ordinarily, other than InPrint, the SYP are not publishers ourselves but rather what it says on the tin, a society of young publishers; The Gilbert Collection is special.

Matthew Gilbert is 19, a budding poet and a terminal cancer patient. Matthew has a bucket list.

Little under a month ago his sister, Hannah, contacted the SYP and asked for help: Matt wanted to publish his work, the SYP wanted to make it happen and so The Gilbert Collection was born. Matt, Hannah, and the SYP alike have been on a campaign ever since. Matt’s been featured heavily in the press and has received attention from the likes of  Alex Reid and Milton Jones, the collection has been featured in The Bookseller, and Hannah has been tweeting up a storm. It’s something I am proud to be a part of.

The Gilbert Collection will be an A5 collection of poetry by Matt, as well as some pieces by other male poets, with all proceeds going to the Everyman Male Cancer Campaign. The deadline is on Friday (14th June) and submissions have been pouring in from all over the world including as far afield as Singapore and New Zealand. Over 50 poets have submitted work and over 100 poems have dropped into the syp.chair@gmail.com inbox. It’s incredibly heart-warming to see so many people getting involved.

As I write this entry the collection has raised £1,262 with two of the donations being made as I’ve been typing.

If you want to pre-order a copy or two and make a donation there is a page set up on JustGiving; if you want to Tweet do so with #GilbertCollection; and if you’re a male poet and want to submit your work, send your poems to syp.chair@gmail.com by Friday 14th June.