Michael Hilston – An emerging WA poet

Michael Hilston, avid cricketer and an award-winning poet from Perth, Western Australia.

Michael Hilston was born at St John Of God in Subiaco, Perth, Western Australia. His interest in poetry was fostered from a young age, in year 6 he was given the chance to write a book of poems. At the end of the year, he had compiled a book filled with 55 poems.

“For a whole year all I did was write poems as a school project, we had sort of a hippie teacher who was different to the rest of the teachers in all my schooling years,” Hilston said.

Hilstons poems are remarkable for their diversity and range, a number of themes run through them from start to finish. Chief among these are his celebration of life and love in all their diversity; his sense of the sanctity of human existence, and yet of its pathos as well. He finds inspiration from issues of his past, current news and people he interacts with.

“I write for the world, just for anyone who wants to read them and it hopefully motivates, inspires or helps people to express their own point of view,” he said.

Hilston indicated that the most rewarding part of writing poetry is making people happy when they hear his poems. He explains that everyone can write poetry; motivation to start is the biggest roadblock, like anything in life. 

Through the years, Hilston created a distinctive technique with his use of grammar when writing poetry. He seldom plays with words merely for the sake of the play; his writings draw attention by its poetic variety.

“I’ve got a certain rhythm with the way that every lines is delivered and so when I read it, I know the rhythm of each sentence, how it’s supposed to be.”

Hilstons interest in poetry was on par with his fast hand in cricket. In 2007 he was club champion at Quinns Rocks Cricket Club, ‘The Stingrays’. He started playing cricket in 1992 and retired in 2010.

Hilston explains that the Up2You organization has provided him with a sense of stability and security.

“Before Up2You there was a lot of travel, moving, around. There are not a lot of suburbs that I have not lived in. This is the longest that I’ve stayed at one address in my life. It provides me with a peace of mind, a good peace of mind,” he stated.

The Up2You team and his carers supports and motivates him to pursue his interest in poetry. Hilston is currently working on a lifelong dream of publishing a book consisting of poetry that he has written at different stages in his life dating back to the young age of nine.

“ Poetry is a therapeutic time pass for me, once I’ve put pen to paper, I can sit down and reflect; it frees, me, it frees my soul,” Hilston stated.


Additional Information:

Favorite quote: “Patience is a virtue, and it all comes in time for those who wait.”

Hilstons tips for an emerging poet:

  1.     Have opinions on topics that interest you
  2.     Think of factors that have an impact on your life
  3.     Write about what comes to mind, be open



– Article and photo by Simorin Pinto