Anna Cederlund was born in Gothenburg and was brought up after her mother’s death in 1888 by her grandparents, who were devout farmers on Gotland. When she joined teaching college in Kalmar as a hopeful young woman, she contracted tuberculosis, which eventually led to her early death. As a young teacher in the Dalecarlian parish of Marnäs, she was deeply interested in social democratic ideas and was inspired by the English critic John Ruskin and his ideas about the significance of beauty in the everyday.
Her poems were published individually; however, a collection showing signs of her advancing illness was published posthumously in 1910 entitled Höst. Using imagery of wounds, weeds, and impurity, she describes how a young life can decline into melancholy. Those around her saw only weakness and misplaced ambitions; however, this image has become more differentiated in more recent interpretations.