"With throats unslaked, with black lips baked, We could nor laugh nor wail; Through utter drought all dumb we stood! I bit my arm, I suck'd the blood, And cried, A sail! a sail! And straight the Sun was fleck'd with bars (Heaven's Mother send us grace!), As if through a dungeon-grate he peer'd With broad and burning face. Are those her ribs through which the Sun, Did peer, as through a grate? And is that Woman all her crew? Is that a Death? And are there two? Is Death that Woman's mate?"
A sail! A sail!
"The selfsame moment I could pray; And from my neck so free, The Albatross fell off, and sank Like lead into the sea. The silly buckets on the deck, That had so long remain'd, I dreamt that they were fill'd with dew; And when I awoke, it rain'd. The loud wind never reach'd the ship, Yet now the ship moved on! Beneath the lightning and the Moon, The dead men gave a groan. The helmsman steer'd, the ship moved on."
God please forgive me for all that I've done!
"The Pilot and the Pilot's boy, I heard them coming fast: Dear Lord in Heaven! it was a joy The dead men could not blast. I saw a third—I heard his voice: It is the Hermit good! He singeth loud his godly hymns That he makes in the wood. He'll shrieve my soul, he'll wash away The Albatross's blood. I woke, and we were sailing on As in a gentle weather: 'Twas night, calm night, the Moon was high... "O shrieve me, shrieve me, holy man!" The Hermit cross'd his brow. "Say quick," quoth he, "I bid thee say— What manner of man art thou?"
The Mariner sees a ship coming there way. But as it approaches, he realizes that there's nobody on board but Death. Without any signs of hope, his sailors then fall one by one to their deaths.
"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; That moment that his face I see, I know the man that must hear me: To him my tale I teach. Farewell, farewell! but this I tell To thee, thou Wedding-Guest! He prayeth well, who loveth well Both man and bird and beast. He prayeth best, who loveth best. All things both great and small; For the dear God who loveth us, He made and loveth all.'"
Farewell, farewell! But this I tell To thee, thou Wedding-Guest! He prayeth well, who loveth well Both man and bird and beast. He prayeth best, who loveth best. All things both great and small; For the dear God who loveth us, He made and loveth all.
Almost out of hope, he prays to God to forgive him for what he has done. The Albatross then falls off his neck and the sky begins to rain. He sees his sailors ghastly figures rise and take control of the ship. They begin sailing towards home.
The Mariner's boat starts to sink and later he wakes up in the boat of a pilot, the pilot's boy, and a hermit. As they row back to land, the hermit asks the Mariner what kind of man he is. As a result, the Mariner is "forced" to tell his tale or his "agony" will not go away.
The Mariner explains to the wedding guest that he feels agony if he doesn't stop and tell his tale. He concludes by saying that God and all his creations are lovely.