Georg Trakl is considered one of the most important Austrian Expressionists. Trakl began to write poetry at the age of 13 but was forced to leave school in 1905 because of his addiction to drugs. He worked as a pharmacist for three years then moved to Vienna to study pharmacy in 1908. In 1910 he enlisted in the army for a year: civilian life proved unsuccessful so he re-enlisted, serving as a pharmacist at a hospital in Innsbruck.

At the beginning of the First World War he was sent as a medical officer to Galicia (comprising parts of today’s Ukraine and Poland) where he suffered frequent bouts of depression, attempting suicide at least once. He died of a cocaine overdose on 2 November 1914.

Georg Trakl’s Poems