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Brothers Michael, left, and John Brown, aged 9 and 11, wrote and illustrated their own book of poetry and have sold it to friends to raise money for Alberta Cancer foundation in honour of their aunt, who has been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.

CHRIS BOLIN/The Globe and Mail

The Donors: Michael and John Brown

The Gift: Raising $2,500 and climbing

The Cause: Alberta Cancer Foundation When Michael and John Brown's aunt Ruth was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, the boys decided they had to do something to help.

Story continues below advertisement

"One night we were looking through some old photos and I thought we could do something different," said Michael, who is nine years old.

"Michael came to me and said 'Let's make a book'," recalled his 11-year-old brother, John.

Michael began writing a dozen poems based on nature, camping trips and family memories. John provided photographs. A friend helped with publishing and the boys, who live in Calgary, began selling Poems of the Spiritual World to friends and neighbours shortly before Christmas. They quickly sold out of the first print run of about 50 books and raised around $2,500, with more donations expected. The money will go to the Alberta Cancer Foundation.

"I wrote about stuff that I had done in the past," said Michael.

"We just thought that we could help save more people's lives and help people just a little more," added John. "It was really really fun. I want to do a sequel."

The boys also received some good news about their aunt, Ruth Tait, who lives in London. Recent scans have found no identifiable cancer, although doctors say the cancer is still in her system.

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