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The cincture from beneath her breast:
Her silken robe, and inner vest,
Dropt to her feet, and full in view,
Behold! her bosom and half her side-
A sight to dream of, not to tell!
O shield her! shield sweet Christabel!

Yet Geraldine nor speaks nor stirs ;
Ah! what a stricken look was hers!
Deep from within she seems half-way
To lift some weight with sick assay,
And eyes the maid and seeks delay;
Then suddenly, as one defied,
Collects herself in scorn and pride,
And lay down by the maiden's side!—
And in her arms the maid she took,
Ah well-a-day!

And with low voice and doleful look
These words did say:

'In the touch of this bosom there worketh a spell,
Which is lord of thy utterance, Christabel !
Thou knowest to-night, and wilt know to-morrow,
This mark of my shame, this seal of my sorrow;
But vainly thou warrest,
For this is alone in
Thy power to declare,

That in the dim forest
Thou heard'st a low moaning,

And found'st a bright lady, surpassingly fair;
And didst bring her home with thee in love
and in charity,

To shield her and shelter her from the damp air.

An ancient
Mariner

meeteth three

Gallants bid

den to a wedding-feast, and detaineth one.

The Wedding-Guest is spell-bound by the eye of

the old seafaring-man, and constrained to hear his tale.

THE RIME OF THE ANCIENT MARINER.

IN SEVEN PARTS.

PART I.

It is an ancient Mariner,

And he stoppeth one of three.

"

By thy long grey beard and glittering eye, Now wherefore stopp'st thou me?

'The Bridegroom's doors are open'd wide, And I am next of kin ;

The guests are met, the feast is set:
May'st hear the merry din.'

He holds him with his skinny hand,
'There was a ship,' quoth he.
'Hold off! unhand me, grey-beard loon!'
Eftsoons his hand dropt he.

He holds him with his glittering eye—
The Wedding-Guest stood still,
And listens like a three years' child:
The Mariner hath his will.

The Wedding-Guest sat on a stone:
He cannot choose but hear;

And thus spake on that ancient man,
The bright-eyed Mariner.

'The ship was cheer'd, the harbour clear'd,

Merrily did we drop

Below the kirk, below the hill,

Below the light-house top.

The Mariner

tells how the
ship sailed
southward
with a good
wind and fair Went down into the sea.
weather, till

it reached the line.

The sun came up upon the left,

Out of the sea came he!

And he shone bright, and on the right

'Higher and higher every day, Till over the mast at noon-'

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 roar'd the blast,
And southward aye we fled.

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 crack'd and growl'd, and roar'd and howl'd,
Like noises in a swound!

The Wedding-Guest heareth the bridal music; but the Mariner continueth his taie.

The ship drawn by a storm toward the south

pole.

The land of

ice, and of fearful

sounds, where no living thing was to be

seen.

Till a great sea-bird, called the

Albatross

And lo! the provetha bird of god omen,

Albatross,
came through
the snow-fog, We hail'd it in God's name.

and was
received with
great joy and
hospitality.

the ship as it returned

northward through fog and floating ice.

The ancient Mariner inhospitably killeth the pious bird of good omen.

His shipmates cry out against the ancient Mari

ner for killing the bird of good luck.

At length did cross an Albatross :
Thorough the fog it came;

As if it had been a Christian soul,

It ate the food it ne'er had eat,
And round and round it flew.

The ice did split with a thunder-fit ;
The helmsman steer'd 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 perch'd for vespers nine;

[white, Whiles all the night, through fog-smoke Glimmer'd the white moon-shine.

'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 !'.

PART II.

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 averr'd, I had kill'd 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 :

make them

Then all averr'd, I had kill'd the bird
That brought the fog and mist.
'Twas right, said they, such birds to slay, plices in the
That bring the fog and mist.

selves accom

crime.

And we did speak only to break

The silence of the sea!

The fair breeze blew, the white foam flew, The fair
The furrow stream'd off free;

We were the first that ever burst

breeze continues, the ship enters the Pacific Ocean, and sails northward, even

Into that silent sea.

Down dropt the breeze, the sails dropt till it reaches 'Twas sad as sad could be ;

the Line.

[down,

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

The very deep did rot: O 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.

But when the fog cleared off, they justify the same, and thus

The ship hath been suddenly becalmed.

And the Albatross begins to be avenged.

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