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THE RIME OF THE ANCIENT MARINER.
The Hermit of the Wood,
PART THE SEVENTH.
THIS Hermit good lives in that wood
How loudly his sweet voice he rears!!
He loves to talk with marineres
That come from a far countree.
He kneels at morn, and noon and eve
He hath a cushion plump:
It is the moss that wholly hides
The rotted old oak-stump.
The Skiff-boat near'd: I heard them talk,
"Why this is strange, I trow!
Where are those lights so many and fair,
That signal made but now ?"
"Strange, by my faith!" the Hermit said"And they answered not our cheer!
The planks look warped! and see those
How thin they are and sere!
I never saw ought like to them,
Unless perchance it were
The skeletons of leaves that lag
My forest-brook along:
When the ivy-tod is heavy with snow,
And the owlet whoops to the wolf below,
That eats the she-wolf's young.'
Dear Lord! it hath a fiendish look—
(The Pilot made reply)
I am a-feared-Push on, push on!
Said the Hermit cheerily.
The boat came closer to the ship,
But I nor spake nor stirred;
The boat came close beneath the ship,
And straight a sound was heard.
Approacheth the ship with wonder.
The ship suddenlysinketh.
saved in the
Under the water it rumbled on,
Still louder and more dread:
It reach'd the ship, it split the bay;
The ship went down like lead.
Stunned by that loud and dreadful sound,
Like one that hath been seven days drown'd,
But swift as dreams, myself I found
Upon the whirl, where sank the ship,
The boat spun round and round;
And all was still, save that the hill
I moved my lips the Pilot shrieked
And fell down in a fit;
The holy Hermit raised his eyes,
And prayed where he did sit.
I took the oars: the Pilot's boy,
Who now doth crazy go,
Laughed loud and long, and all the while
His eyes went to and fro.
"Ha! ha!" quoth he, "full plain I see,
The Devil knows how to row."
now, all in my own countree,
I stood on the firm land!
The Hermit stepped forth from the boat,
"O shrieve me, shrieve me, holy man!" The Hermit cross'd his brow.
"Say quick," quoth he, "I bid thee sayWhat manner of man art thou?"
Forthwith this frame of mine was wrench'd
With a woeful agony,
Which forced me to begin my tale;
And then it left me free.
and the pe-
Since then, at an uncertain hour,
That agony returns;
And till my ghastly tale is told,
And ever and
life an agony
from land to land,
I pass, like night, from land to land;
I know the man that must hear me:
To him my tale I teach.
What loud uproar bursts from that door!
The wedding-guests are there;
But in the garden-bower the bride
And bride-maids singing are;
And hark the little vesper bell,
Which biddeth me to prayer!
O Wedding-Guest! this soul hath been
Alone on a wide wide sea:
So lonely 'twas, that God himself
Scarce seemed there to be.
O sweeter than the marriage-feast,
"Tis sweeter far to me,
To walk together to the kirk
With a goodly company
To walk together to the kirk,