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The Wedding-Guest here beat his breast, For he heard the loud bassoon.

The bride hath paced into the hall,
Red as a rose is she;
Nodding their heads before her goes
The merry minstrelsy.

The Wedding-Guest he beat his breast,
Yet he cannot choose but hear ;
And thus spake on that ancient man,
The bright-eyed Mariner :

“ And now the storm-blast came, and he

Was tyrannous and strong :
He struck with his o'ertaking wings,
And chased us south along.

“ With sloping masts and dipping prow,

As who pursued with yell and blow
Still treads the shadow of his foe,
And forward bends his head,
The ship drove fast, loud roared the blast,
And southward aye we fled.

66 And now there came both mist and snow,
And it grew wondrous cold:
And ice, mast-high, came floating by,
As green as emerald.

“And through the drifts the snowy clifts

Did send a dismal sheen:

Nor shapes of men nor beasts we ken,
The ice was all between.

“ The ice was here, the ice was there,

The ice was all around :
It cracked and growled, and roared and howled,
Like noises in a swound !

“ At length did cross an Albatross,

Thorough the fog it came ;
As if it had been a Christian soul,
We hailed it in God's name.

“ It ate the food it ne'er had ate,

And round and round it flew :
The ice did split with a thunder-fit;
The helmsman steered us through!

“ And a good south wind sprung up behind;

The Albatross did follow,
And every day, for food or play,
Came to the mariners' hollo !

“In mist or cloud, on mast or shroud,

It perched for vespers nine ;
Whiles all the night, through fog-smoke white,
Glimmered the white moonshine.”

“God save thee, ancient Mariner !

From the fiends that plague thee thus !
Why look’st thou so ?” “With my cross-bow
I shot the Albatross.”


6 The sun now rose upon the right:

Out of the sea came he
Still hid in mist, and on the left
Went down into the sea.

“ And the good south wind still blew behind,

But no sweet bird did follow,
Nor any day for food or play
Came to the mariners' hollo!


“ And I had done a hellish thing,

And it would work 'em woe:
For all averred I had killed the bird
That made the breeze to blow.
Ah, wretch! said they, the bird to slay,
That made the breeze to blow !

“Nor dim nor red, like God's own head,

The glorious sun uprist :
Then all averred I had killed the bird
That brought the fog and mist :-
'Twas right, said they, such birds to slay,
That bring the fog and mist.

“ The fair breeze blew, the white foam flew,

The furrow followed free;
We were the first that ever burst
Into that silent sea.

“Down dropt the breeze, the sails dropt down,

'Twas sad as sad could be ;

And we did speak only to break
The silence of the sea !

« All in a hot and copper sky,

The bloody sun, at noon,
Right up above the mast did stand,
No bigger than the moon.

“ Day after day, day after day,

We stuck, nor breath nor motion;
As idle as a painted ship
Upon a painted ocean.

“ Water, water, everywhere,

And all the boards did shrink;
Water, water, everywhere,
Nor any drop to drink.

The very deep did rot: 0 Christ !

That ever this should be !
Yea, slimy things did crawl with legs
Upon the slimy sea.

“ About, about, in reel and rout

The death-fires danced at night ;
The water, like a witch's oils,
Burnt green, and blue, and white.

66 And some in dreams assured were

Of the spirit that plagued us so ; Nine fathom deep he had followed us From the land of mist and snow.

“ And every tongue, through utter drouth,

Was withered at the root ;
We could not speak, no more than if
We had been choked with soot.

“Ah! well-a-day! what evil looks

Had I from old and young!
Instead of the Cross, the Albatross
About my neck was hung.


time! a weary

“There passed a weary time. Each throat

Was parched, and glazed each eye.

How glazed each weary eye!
When, looking westward, I beheld
A something in the sky.


“ At first it seemed a little speck,

And then it seemed a mist;
It moved and moved, and took at last
A certain shape, I wist !
A speck, a mist, a shape, I wist !
And still neared and neared :
As if it dodged a water-sprite,
It plunged and tacked and veered.

“With throats unslaked, with black lips baked,

We could nor laugh nor wail;
Through utter drouth all dumb we stood !
I bit my arm, I sucked the blood,
And cried, A sail! a sail !

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