Georg Trakl

Georg Trakl Poems

When snow falls against the window,
Long sounds the evening bell...
For so many has the table
Been prepared, the house set in order.
...

At evening the autumn woodlands ring
With deadly weapons. Over the golden plains
And lakes of blue, the sun
More darkly rolls. The night surrounds
...

There is a stubble field on which a black rain falls.
There is a tree which, brown, stands lonely here.
There is a hissing wind which haunts deserted huts- -
How sad this evening.
...

4.

It is a light, that the wind has extinguished.
It is a pub on the heath, that a drunk departs in the afternoon.
It is a vineyard, charred and black with holes full of spiders.
It is a space, that they have white-limed with milk.
...

5.

Dreamless sleep - the dusky Eagles
nightlong rush about my head,
man's golden image drowned
in timeless icy tides. On jagged reefs
...

Sun of autumn, thin and shy
And fruit drops off the trees,
Blue silence fills the peace
Of a tardy afternoon’s sky.
...

The blueness dies out in my eyes tonight,
the red gold of my heart. O how still the light burns!
Your cloak of sadness encircles the long descent.
Your red lips seal your friend’s unhinging.
...

The black snow runs down from the rooftops;
A red finger dips into your brow;
Blue snow flakes sink into the empty room,
They are a lovers’ dying mirrors.
...

Gone and passed is the gold of day,
And the evening’s brown and blue:
Silenced the shepherd’s tender flute
And the evening’s brown and blue
...

10.

In the spirit’s solitary hours
It is lovely to walk in the sun
Along the yellow walls of summer.
Quietly whisper the steps in the grass; yet always sleeps
...

He truly loved the purple sun, descending from the hills,
The ways through the woods, the singing blackbird
And the joys of green.
...

The wind, which moves purple treetops,

Is God's breath that comes and goes.

The black village rises before the forest;

Three shadows are laid over the field.
...

13.

Very bright tones in the thin winds,

They sing the distant mourning of this day,

That makes us dream after never-felt showers

Completely filled with unimaginable smells.
...

Oh, the great city's madness when at nightfall
The crippled trees gape by the blackened wall,
The spirit of evil peers from a silver mask;
...

Night threatens at the bed of our kisses.

Somewhere a whisper: who absolves your guilt?

Still trembling from the sweetness of nefarious lust

We pray: forgive us, Mary, in your mercy.
...

16.

In the evening, when the bells ring peace,

I follow the wonderful flights of birds,

That in long rows, like devout processions of pilgrims,

Disappear into the clear autumn vastness.
...

In the dark many bird voices call,

The trees and the springs murmur noisily,

In the clouds a rose-colored glow sounds

Like early love's distress. The night blues away -
...

Wanderer in the blackened wind. Dry reeds whisper
in the stillness of the moor. A column of savage birds
ensues in the dawning sky.
Over murky waters they cross.
...

The sun shines alone in the afternoon,

And quietly the tone of the honey-bees wavers off.

In the garden the sisters' voices whisper -

There the boy listens in the wooden shed,
...

The last, pale light went from the day,
The early passions have rustled down,
The holy wine of my joys spilled
Now my heart weeps in the night and listens
...

Georg Trakl Biography

Georg Trakl was an Austrian poet. He is considered one of the most important Austrian Expressionists.

Life and Work

Trakl was born and lived the first 18 years of his life in Salzburg, Austria. His father, Tobias Trakl (11 June 1837, Ödenburg/Sopron – 1910), was a dealer of hardware from Hungary, while his mother, Maria Catharina Halik (17 May 1852, Wiener Neustadt – 1925), was a housewife of Czech descent with strong interests in art and music.

Trakl attended a Catholic elementary school, although his parents were Protestants. He matriculated in 1897 at the Salzburg Staatsgymnasium, where he studied Latin, Greek, and mathematics. At age 13, Trakl began to write poetry. As a high school student, he began visiting brothels, where he enjoyed giving rambling monologues to the aging prostitutes. At age 15, he began drinking alcohol, and using opium, chloroform, and other drugs. By the time he was forced to quit school in 1905, he was a drug addict. Many critics think that Trakl suffered from undiagnosed schizophrenia.

After quitting high school, Trakl worked for a pharmacist for three years and decided to adopt pharmacy as a career. It was during this time that he experimented with playwriting, but his two short plays, All Souls' Day and Fata Morgana, were not successful.

In 1908, Trakl moved to Vienna to study pharmacy, and became acquainted with some local artists who helped him publish some of his poems. Trakl's father died in 1910, soon before Trakl received his pharmacy certificate; thereafter, Trakl enlisted in the army for a year-long stint. His return to civilian life in Salzburg was unsuccessful and he re-enlisted, serving as a pharmacist at a hospital in Innsbruck. There he also met the local artistic community. Ludwig von Ficker, the editor of the journal Der Brenner (and son of the historian Julius von Ficker), became his patron: he regularly printed Trakl's work and endeavored to find him a publisher to produce a collection of poems. The result of these efforts was Gedichte (Poems), published by Kurt Wolff in Leipzig during the summer of 1913. Ficker also brought Trakl to the attention of Ludwig Wittgenstein, who anonymously provided him with a sizable stipend so that he could concentrate on his writing.

In 1912, he was stationed in Innsbruck, Austria, where he became acquainted with a group of avant-garde artists involved with the well-regarded literary journal Der Brenner, a journal that began the Kierkegaard revival in the German-speaking countries.

At the beginning of World War I, Trakl was sent as a medical official to attend soldiers in Galicia (comprising portions of modern-day Ukraine and Poland). Trakl suffered frequent bouts of depression. During one such incident in Gródek, Trakl had to steward the recovery of some ninety soldiers wounded in the fierce campaign against the Russians. He tried to shoot himself from the strain, but his comrades prevented him. Hospitalized at a military hospital in Kraków and observed closely, Trakl lapsed into worse depression and wrote to Ficker for advice. Ficker convinced him to communicate with Wittgenstein. Upon receiving Trakl's note, Wittgenstein went to the hospital, but found that Trakl had died of a cocaine overdose. Trakl was buried at Kraków's Rakowicki Cemetery on 6 November 1914, but on 7 October 1925, as a result of the efforts by Ficker, his remains were transferred to Mühlau near Innsbruck (where they now repose next to Ficker's).

The Best Poem Of Georg Trakl

Winter Evening

When snow falls against the window,
Long sounds the evening bell...
For so many has the table
Been prepared, the house set in order.

From their wandering, many
Come on dark paths to this gateway.
The tree of grace is flowering in gold
Out of the cool sap of the earth.

In stillness, wanderer, step in:
Grief has worn the threshold into stone.
But see: in pure light, glowing
There on the table: bread and wine.

Georg Trakl Comments

manidipa sanyal 13 September 2020

1. From which book of George Trakl the poem " der schlaf" is taken? 2. From which book of Wilhelm Lehmann the poem " Februarmond" is taken?

0 0 Reply
Marya 13 October 2018

Georg Trakl is a rare poet....who haunted all my youth. This translation seems to be familiar to me. Can you tell me who the translator was?

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Gray Mason 13 October 2018

Are these poems in the public domain, or are they subject to copyright?

0 0 Reply
Soul Watcher 24 June 2016

I like to read to this great poet, thank you for sharing his poems

3 0 Reply

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