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The Skiff-boat ner'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 answer'd not our cheer. “ The planks look warp'd, and see those sails

How thin they are and sere! I never saw aught 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 has a fiendish look

(The Pilot made reply) “ I am a-fear'd.” “ Push on, push on!”

Said the Hermit cheerily.

The Boat came closer to the Ship,

But I nor spake nor stirr'd !
The Boat came close beneath the Ship,

And strait a sound was heard !

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.

Stunn’d by that loud and dreadful sound,

Which sky and ocean smote : Like one that hath been seven days drown'd

My body lay afloat:

But, swift as dreams, myself I found

Within the Pilot's boat.

Upon the whirl, where sank the Ship,

The boat spun round and round , And all was still, save that the hill

Was telling of the sound.

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I mov'd my lips : the Pilot shriek'd

And fell down in a fit.
The Holy Hermit rais’d his eyes

And pray'd where he did sit.

I took the oars : the Pilot's boy,

Who now doth crazy go, Laugh'd 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."

And now all in mine own Countrée

I stood on the firm land !

The Hermit stepp'd forth from the boat,

And scarcely he could stand.

“O shrieve me, shrieve me, holy Man !"

The Hermit cross'd his brow “ Say quick," quoth he, I bid thee say

" What manner man art thou ?"

Forthwith this frame of mind was wrench'd

With a woeful agony,
Which forc'd me to begin my tale

And then it left me free.

Since then at an uncertain hour,

That agony returns ;
And till my ghastly tale is told

This heart within me burns.

I pass, like night, from land to land;

I have strange power of speech ;
The moment that his face I see
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.

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