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    The Rime of the Ancient Mariner Essay Paper

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    The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Samuel Taylor Coleridge

    Part 1: An old man stops one of three men walking down the street to go to a wedding. The man is a relation of the married couple. The man tries to get away, but the old man grabs him with his skinny hand. The man is held there by the glitter of the old man’s eye. The man is listening intently, like a three-year-old child.” The old man has the man’s attention. The wedding guest sits down on a stone. The mariner continues his story. The boat was anchored by a church. “Eftsoons” – unhand me. The ship was sailing south because the sun came up on the left side of the boat. They sailed closer to the equator every day because the sun came overhead. “Minstrel” – musicians. The bride has started to walk down the aisle, and the music is playing. The old man carries on. There was a storm at the equator. The storm drove them to the South Pole. The storm was very strong. They went through mist, and then it started to snow. It became very cold. They went by very large chunks of ice floating through the water (icebergs). There was nothing but ice and snow, and there were no animals, just ice. An albatross flew over. After a few days, the men were happy to see it because they needed hope. The men fed it. The ice broke in front of the boat, and then they sailed through the ice to safety. A good south wind helped them sail north. The bird followed them. “Ken” – know something. “Ne’er” – never. “Vespers” – days. The bird stayed with them for nine days. The ancient mariner shot the albatross with his crossbow. “Hollow” – called albatross.

    Part II: Burst of sea – ship wake. There was no more bird following the boat (they felt alone again). They ran out of food. The people on the boat cursed at the mariner for killing their omen of good luck. The wind had stopped. “God’s own head” – sun. “Averred” – swear, agree to. They thought that the bird had brought the fog because the fog had cleared after the bird died. The breeze stopped, and the boat stopped. The sky was clear, and it was very hot. They were at the equator because the sun at noon was above the mast. They stayed there for a few days without wind. It was like they were a painting. “Water, water, everywhere,” they could not see anything except the water. “Nor any drop to drink.” There was no more water to drink. The water was churning. A spirit had followed them from 9 fathoms deep – 6 feet deep under the boat. No one could talk because their tongues had swollen because of the drought. The people tied the albatross around the neck of the mariner.

    Part III: After quite a while, the mariner saw something in the distance. “Tack and veer” – take advantage of a side wind. The mariner bit his arm and drank blood to tell that there was a boat coming. There was no wind or tide, but the boat still moved. There were two people on the boat. The man is the grim reaper, and the woman is life in death. The ship was only a skeleton of a ship. The two played dice for the crew. Life in death won. There was no sunset, but from light to sudden dark, each of the men on the boat died and cursed the mariner with open eyes. 200 men died one by one in a sudden thump. The mariner watches the men’s souls leave their bodies. They all went by the mariner like arrows from his crossbow.

    Part IV: The wedding guest is afraid that the mariner is a spirit and becomes scared. The mariner tells him that he was the only one to survive. The mariner was all alone on the ship with “a thousand thousand slimy things” (maggots) that were eating the bodies. The mariner really feels alone when he cannot pray. The flesh fell from the bones, “cold sweat melted from their limbs,” they did not rot or smell bad, they still stared at him. The mariner lived for seven days and nights after the men died and he could still not die. The things on top of the water made the mariner feel like he was no longer alone. “O happy living things!” The mariner blessed the living things. At that same moment, the mariner could pray because he felt that someone was listening to him. The albatross fell off his neck and sunk into the sea. Part V: The mariner could finally sleep. He thinks that Mary sent him sleep from the heavens. He had a dream that dew was coming down. It started to rain in buckets. He drank more than he thought he could and he still continued to drink. The wind started to roar. The wind did not come very close but close enough to shake the sails and make the boat move. He could see the moon at the edge of the cloud that gave him wind and rain. Lightning fell straight down. The dead men gave a groan. The dead rose and started to walk on the deck. The helmsman steered and the rest worked the ropes. The body of his brother’s son stood by the mariner. The mariner wanted to help him with the rope but the boy would not let him. The wedding guest is scared of the mariner again. This was a way to forgive the mariner for killing the bird. The men died later in the morning around the mast. Birds filled the air and were singing. The spirit made the ship move. The sound of the sails was “pleasant.” There was no wind but the boat kept on moving. The wind stopped moving at noon and the boat also stopped. The boat moved back and forth in the water. The boat moved quickly and then the blood went into his head and the mariner was knocked out. He doesn’t know how long he was there but he woke up hearing two voices. The one man loved both the albatross and the man who shot the bird. They agree that the mariner has paid his penance but he should continue to do so. Part VI: All of the men were looking at the mariner when he woke up. The mariner could not pray again but then the curse finally broke. The ship flew through the air and went very fast. It flew him back to his own country. If it is a dream, he wants the dream to last forever. The wind chaser was steady upon the kirk. A man of all light stood upon every corpse. All of them waved to the mariner. He was happy that they all forgave him before they went to heaven. The pilot and his son came in a boat to see the men in the mariner’s boat. The hermit also came and the mariner believed that the sins would be washed away. Part VII: The hermit likes to talk with mariners. The men in the small boat do not know where the ship came from. The men notice the bad shape of the boat and its sails. The hermit was afraid of the boat but insisted on moving on. The mariner’s ship suddenly sank. When the rowboat came upon the mariner’s ship, the pilot saved the mariner. The mariner was knocked out by the crash of the boat and he was lying in the water. The rowboat was spinning in the whirl that was caused by the sinking ship. The mariner spoke and the pilot was amazed and he “fell down in a fit.” The hermit then prayed. The pilot’s boy took a fit. The boy thought that the mariner was the devil. The hermit had a hard time standing. When they got back to land, the mariner must travel to different lands for the rest of his life and tell the story. He can speak any language just as long as someone will listen. The wedding was over and everyone came out of the church. The bridesmaids are singing. The mariner tells the wedding guest that he must love man and all animals. The mariner is gone and the wedding guest is stunned when he walks toward the church. But he is a wiser man, though he is sad for the mariner.

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