Peep Ilmet made his debut in 1969 in the Õitsev tuul (Blossoming Wind) edition of a samizdat magazine, Kamikadze. He was one of the most fertile authors of underground manuscript almanacs at that time. The conditional point marking the development of almanac literature was the Prague Spring in 1968, and the tightened censorship that following it. The Soviet authorities suppressed this phenomenon over the next decade; however, the tradition continued up until Estonia's re-independence. Ilmet's first collection was titled Tuulekanne (Wind Drift, 1980).
Peep Ilmet (a.k.a. Gorinov) was born in 1948, the son of a pharmacist in Palamuse. He studied land-use planning as well as history at the University of Tartu, working in the University's sociology lab and then later as a book restorer. He has also worked in the Matsalu Nature Preserve; his children's poetry book Matsalu mailt (From the Lands of Matsalu, 1986) – a poetic journey into the bird kingdom – also dates to this period. A member of the Estonian Writers' Union since 1986, Ilmet is a freelance writer. His connection to books also extends to the art of binding: he appears as a binding artist at exhibitions, and belongs to the Estonian Leatherwork Artists' Union. Ilmet has composed several collections of poems and is a translator of poetry, having translated a great deal from Russian. He has also versified poetry excerpts from the books of, for example, Rudyard Kipling, Oscar Wilde, and Charles Perrault. His poetry has been translated into English, Finnish, and Russian, and his short prose to German.
One of the favorite devices of Ilmet's delightful nature poetry is the wind, which has been called his signature device and his manner of observing the world's fate. On the one hand, this device's roots lie deep in the tradition of authored Estonian poetry – in poet Gustav Suits' 'tuulemaa' ('land of the wind') – while on the other hand, Ilmet's manner of depiction is linked to the language of ancient Estonian beliefs by way of its spellbinding vigor. This author of "windy poetry" is at one moment glum and gloomy, and then tender; his poetry is singsong and resounding, even slightly mystical, and is somehow sturdily bright in this way. The term "nature poetry" would certainly somewhat restrict the field of meaning of Ilmet's poems: they firmly clutch at its land, its history and perception. At one moment, it is limiting, and at another, it is liberating and broadening – a universal feeling. By form, it is mostly in a certain meter and in rhyme; the poetic language is rich, with plays on words and language. Ilmet has enriched the Estonian haiku tradition, and has done so engrossed, deriving from the nature and weather of his land. Another very interesting form in his poetry are the so-called liivings: an original form of Estonian four-line poetry, which stems from the works of Juhan Liiv – a great classic in Estonian poetry. The collection of selected works titled Tuuldunud luule (Aired Poems, 1998) brings together the best of his earlier poems. A concentrated collection of short forms published in 2012 is titled Ajastaja (Everlasting), the part of which titled Meelemõlgutuseks (For Mind-Musing) explains the author's selection of his poetic form; poetry dedicated to both Juhan Liiv and Lao-Zi can be found there.
The author himself has performed his poetry in song. His texts have been put into song, and one of Estonia's most influential rock bands, Ultima Thule, has also put tunes to the words.