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It is an ancient Mariner,

And he stoppeth one of three: "By thy long gray beard and thy glittering eye

Now wherefore stoppest me?

The Bridegroom's doors are opened wide,

And I am next of kin;
The Guests are met, the Feast is set,—

May 'st hear the merry din."

But still he holds the wedding-guest— "There was a Ship," quoth he—

"Nay, if thou 'st got a laughsome tale,
Mariner! come with me."

He holds him with his skinny hand,
Quoth he, "There was a Ship—"

"Now get thee hence, thou gray-beard Loon Or my StafF shall make thee skip."

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 sate on a stone,

He cannot choose but hear:
And thus spake on that ancient man,

The bright-eyed Mariner.

"The Ship was cheered, the Harbour cleared—

Merrily did we drop
Below the Kirk, below the Hill,

Below the Light-house top.

The Sun came up upon the left,

Out of the Sea came he:
And he shone bright, and on the right

Went down into the sea.

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 go

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:

"But now the North wind came more fierce,

There came a Tempest strong!
And Southward still for days and weeks

Like Chaff we drove along.

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.

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