Rime of the Ancient Mariner: Part IV Andrew Perricone • Imogen Rosenbluth Kalev Rudolph • Alyssa Stump Stanzas 1 & 2 'I fear thee, ancient Mariner! I fear thy skinny hand! And thou art long, lank, and brown, As is the ribbed sea-sand. I fear thee and thy glittering eye, And thy skinny hand, so brown.' "Fear not, fear not, thou WeddingGuest! This body dropped not down. • • • • • IRONY despite the fact that the Mariner has long been removed from his frightful experiences at sea, his appearance still reflects the hardships he went through long ago. "skinny, long, lank,brown" SIMILE appears when the wedding guest compares the Mariner to the 'ribbed sea sand' implying that the Mariner is part of the sea as the sea is part of him. ALLITERATION is used to emphasize the characteristics of the Mariner that never changed and will not be able to change in the future. MOOD fear is recurring and implies an air of vulnerability and/or anxiety that comes from the Wedding-Guest which JUXTAPOSES the MOTIF that emerges from the Mariner that he is unable to falter and does not give up. REPETITION of the Mariner's dark hand, which emphasizes that the origin of who he is comes from the sea, and the reason he has the mindset that he does, physically and metaphorically 'body dropped not down' considering his age. DEVIATION from the original structure is meant to emphasize the Motif. Stanzas 3 & 4 Alone, alone, all, all alone, Alone on a wide wide sea! And never a saint took pity on My soul in agony. The many men, so beautiful! And they all dead did lie; And a thousand thousand slimy things Lived on; and so did I • • REPETITION emphasis on his solidarity, as well as the JUXTAPOSITION between his small self and the vast sea despite the forgiving nature of a saint there is no mercy for a man in his state ironically. He is one with the 'slimy things' and there is an implication the slimy things are small, as he is in comparison to the vast sea alluded to previously. There may be 'many many men' but not as many as there are 'slimy things' considering there are thousands and thousands. The dead men are so 'beautiful' as he looks upon them, creating the gothic mood that such a violent death is cushioned by his perspective of beauty. Stanzas 5 & 6 I looked upon the rotting sea, And drew my eyes away; I looked upon the rotting deck, And there the dead men lay. (Gloss: And envieth that they should live, and so many lie dead) I looked to heaven, and tried to pray; But or ever a prayer had gusht, A wicked whisper came, and made My heart as dry as dust. • • • • • Repetition of "rotting" shows the hopelessness and death surrounding the Mariner, within nature as well as the crew Gloss refers to previous in 1-4, illustrating the Mariner's continued resentment of nature and value of human life The mariner's inability to pray shows a godly power held by death and nature, he is "hellish" separate from heaven Repetition of the W gives the stanza a feeling of ghostly mystery and the D rhythmically punctuates the stanza The Mariner has been cut off from god, left truly alone with the bodies of the dead crew Stanza 7 & 8 I closed my lids, and kept them close, And the balls like pulses beat; For the sky and the sea, and the sea and the sky Lay like a load on my weary eye, And the dead were at my feet. The cold sweat melted from their limbs, Nor rot nor reek did they: The look with which they looked on me Had never passed away. (Gloss: But the curse liveth for him in the eye of the dead men) • • • • • • • Repetition gives a feeling of determination and fear A pounding headache is described Inversion emphasizes how heavy the struggle of the Mariner is There is a great exhaustion, and an inability to fall asleep with the dead around him The dead are trapped in a stasis, similar to the Mariner The rhythmic repetition of "nor ..." adds to the eerie and mystical tone The repetition of look and and the W sound emphasize the "curse...in the eye" and deathly stare of the dead (from prior section) Stanzas 9 & 10 An orphan’s curse would drag to hell A spirit from on high; But oh! more horrible than that Is the curse in a dead man’s eye! Seven days, seven nights, I saw that curse, And yet I could not die. The moving Moon went up the sky, And no where did abide: Softly she was going up, And a star or two beside— (Gloss: In his loneliness and fixedness he yearneth towards the journeying Moon, and the stars that still sojourn, yet still move onward; and everywhere the blue sky belongs to them, and is their appointed rest, and their native country and their own natural homes, which they enter unannounced, as lords that are certainly expected and yet there is a silent joy at their arrival.) • • • • • Stanza length change – highlights his despair in living and simulates the length of his torture. Important to note that he experiences this “Life-In-Death” for seven days and nights – later he remarks that he is “like one that hath been seven days drowned” Moon is capitalized, personified like the Sun earlier. Plenty in the gloss that is not in the poem itself. Coleridge describes the moon and stars as powerful lords of the sky The moon is free to move where it wishes, but the mariner is stuck on the cursed ship. Stanzas 11 & 12 Her beams bemocked the sultry main Like April hoar-frost spread; But where the ship’s huge shadow lay, The charmed water burnt alway A still and awful red. Beyond the shadow of the ship, I watched the water-snakes: They moved in tracks of shining white, And when they reared, the elfish light Fell off in hoary flakes. (Gloss: By the light of the Moon he beholdeth God’s creatures of the great calm.) • • • • Warring imagery—the moon spreads frosty colors across the ship, but the water burns red in its shadow. While the moon might calm the curse momentarily, it still lies beneath. Stanza length change Stanza length change The snakes are “beyond the shadow of the ship” and therefore associated with cold rather than heat (“hoary flakes”). Stanza 13 Within the shadow of the ship A I watched their rich attire: B Blue, glossy green, and velvet black, C They coiled and swam; and every track C Was a flash of golden fire B ( Gloss: By the light of the Moon he beholdeth God’s creatures of the great calm) • • • • • • • The Ancient Mariner continues to admire the shiny, slippery sea creatures he sees from the ship in the moonlight. REPETITION of "shadow of the ship" at beginning of stanzas 12 and 13 emphasizes setting and the ominous nature of the ship itself RHYME SCHEME changes from the traditional ABCB quatrain form to an ABCCB pattern with five lines per stanza IMAGERY present in description of "watersnakes" and they way they glint in the moonlight ( "Blue, glossy green, and velvet black," "coiled and swam," etc.) TONE is pensive, reflective, melancholy Revisits the JUXTAPOSITION of light and dark with ship's shadow and the sea creatures' "flash of golden fire" Water-snakes could symbolize the natural beauty that the Mariner disrupts, "all of God's creatures" living on unaffected by his crime Stanzas 14 & 15 Oh happy living things! No tongue A Their beauty might declare: B A spring of love gushed from my heart, C And I blessed them unaware: B (Gloss: Their beauty and their happiness.) Sure my kind saint took pity on me, D And I blessed them unaware. B (Gloss: He blesseth them in his heart.) The self-same moment I could pray; A And from my neck so free B The Albatross fell off, and sank C Like lead into the sea. B (Gloss: The spell begins to break.) • • • • • • • • The Ancient Mariner blesses the sea creatures he observes, hailing their beauty. Simultaneously (or perhaps as a result), he regains his ability to pray and the Albatross falls from his neck, a weight lifted ("The spell begins to break"). Why "unaware?" Subconsciously? REPETITION of "And I blessed them unaware" in fourth and sixth line of the first stanza RHYME SCHEME changes again! Fourteenth stanza is ABCBDB (total six lines) and then returns to quatrain form in the fifteenth stanza. METAPHOR in "a spring of love gushed from my heart" SIMILE in line 4 of Stanza 16--"like lead" SYMBOLISM of Albatross as reminder of guilt, "marks" the Mariner as a sinner (like Cain)--when it falls, a weight is lifted from the Mariner, both literally and figuratively. ALLUSION to patron saint Relationship to Poem In Part 4, the Ancient Mariner must cope with his intense loneliness and guilt in the aftermath of his crew's mysterious massacre. Ashamed and revolted of himself, he equates himself to the "slimy things" that lurk in the ocean. The Ancient Mariner also discovers that he has lost his ability to pray and perhaps his faith as well. For the first time, the reader sees how deeply he is affected by his deed, and what a punishment it is for him to remain alive surrounded by the peers he inadvertently murdered. However, as time passes, he is forced to reflect upon what he has done, and begins to come to terms with the horrific things he has seen and done. He regains the respect and appreciation he once had for the natural world as well as his faith. Part 4 has a dismal beginning, but leaves the reader hopeful. This part transitions the reader from the hopeless aftermath of the spectral massacre to the beginning of the Mariner's salvation.