6/25/2019

"The Rime of Ancient Mariner" by Coleridge as a Supernatural poem.


S. T. Coleridge is the greatest English poet of the supernaturalism and his The Rime of the Ancient Mariner is one of the best poems of supernatural ever written in English literature. The poet employs the supernatural elements in this poem in a convincing manner. As we go through the poems, there is a willing suspension of disbelief on our part. The poem contains several impossible incidents, yet we feel inclined to believe what we read. A lot of unbelievable supernatural events have been incorporated in the
poem. But Coleridge portrays these events in such a way that they might seem natural and believable to the readers.

The story of the Ancient Mariner is an unbelievable one. Up to the killing of the Albatross, everything around the ship of the Ancient Mariner is natural, but after the killing, unbelievable and supernatural things begin to happen. First of all, Coleridge aroused the sense of supernatural mystery by transporting us to distant times and remote places. After the killing of the Albatross, the ship of the Mariner entered into a silent sea where the ship remained unmoving as idle as a painted ship upon a painted ocean.

The appearance of the spectre ship is a supernatural element. For the Albatross, the sailors had to suffer untold sufferings. They not a drop of drinking water. They were waiting for a ship to and to help them. At that time a skleton ship comes with two
supernatural figures on its deck. One of the figures is Death and the other is Life-in-Death. The poet describes a mood of uncanny fear in the minds of the readers by describing the physical appearance of the Life-in-Death.

The manner of the death of two hundred sailors is also supernatural. Two hundred sailors drop down dead one by one so quickly that they could neither groan nor sigh. As each sailor drops down dead, his soul passes by the old sailor like the whiz of a
crossbow.

The most supernatural event in the whole poem is the coming back to life of the dead sailors. After the old sailor blesses the water snakes, his redemption begins and ship is driven towards the home harbour by the Polar Spirit. At one point a group of Angels enter into the body of the dead sailors and the dead sailors rise to their feet and row the ship.

The manner of falling the dead Albatross from the Mariner's neck and the talking of the two voices in the air are equally supernatural events. For the killing of the Albatross, the other sailors blamed the old sailor and they hung the dead Albatross round his neck as a punishment. But when the old sailor blessed the water-snakes, the dead body of the albatross fell down into the sea automatically and :

The selfsame moment I could pray:
And from my neck so free
The Albatross fell off, and sank
Like lead into the sea.

Thus Coleridge presented supernatural incidents in such a way
mat they appeared to be real. In one stroke Coleridge presents a keleton ship, the spectre sea, the woman and her death mate, the coming back to life of the ship's crew and Polar Spirits talking to one another. But these supernatural incidents have not been left without their association with reality. With these supernatural incidents, the has artistically woven convincing pictures of Nature like the sun shining  brightly, the mist and the snow surrounding the ship, the freezing cold of the Arctic region, the water-snakes moving in the water. Thus the natural and the supernatural, the realistic and the fantastie, the possible and the impossible have been so artistically blended that the whole strikes us as quite convincing and credible.

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