Iron Maiden Music Transcendence Through “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” Melodic Poem

The rhythmic beat that Iron Maiden provides for Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s poem “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” with Electric guitars, bass, and drum kits make it like a form of Romantic poetry. This is because music, is something that is mostly associated with inspiration, and just like Romanticism, it shares the similar effects of transcendence. Although, one can’t say the same thing for the types of lyrics that Iron Maiden uses. Unlike Iron Maiden, Taylor Coleridge’s poem uses very archaic words, sometimes hard to understand what is truly going on in the story. In contrast, because Iron maiden does not use the archaic words and “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” does; it can be considered to be a modern day Romantic poem, for the same definition we learned in class about Romanticism, and the poems target “low class” audience; Iron Maiden uses words that are use on the daily, paraphrasing the poem through music.

Despite the fact that Iron Maiden paraphrase the entire poem, instead of singing it all word for word, they also use stanzas that are present in the poem such in the case when they are stranded in the ocean with shortage of supplies “Water, water, every where,/ An all the boards did shrink;/ Water, water every where, Nor any drop to drink” (ll 46-49). In both versions of the story, water is mentioned, a representation of nature as a whole possibly. This is because one: nature words relate back to the idea of Romanticism; and two: because nature can be understood the same even in two different time periods, it is the source of life. Iron Maiden, truly captures the essence of Romanticism not because they shift the story to the point that people are able to understand in an unarchaic language, but stays true to the part that the poem embodies the elements of Romanticism, nature.

The fact that the poetic devices seen in the poem are repetition and rhyme emphasizes a lyrical and much a like a melody constructed by words that create the same or similar sounds can be referred back to the way in which Iron Maiden adds a melodic sound that matches the gothic theme in the poem. The poem itself, encourages the form of music even with its poetic style that is present in nature “Sometimes a dropping from the sky/ I heard the sky-lark sing.” This constant use of birds keeps returning throughout the poem as spirits. The spirits is only represented by animals, but the communication of spirits and nature is only represented by sound animals make “And now ‘twas like all instruments;/ Now like a lonely flute;/ And now it is an angel’s song,/ That makes the heavens be mute” (ll 348-355). This part may represent the idea that Iron Maiden enjoy the art of music and embrace it as a way to transcend to a spiritual level without committing a crime against nature, the Mariner had to learn it the hard way that nature is possible to make music; therefore, as people are also a part of nature is possible to create music as well. Based on the Mariners experience in the ship, it is a tale of gratitude to nature that helps as a spirit to aid but it also takes on revenge if it is ever disturb.

Enrique Ramos


2 thoughts on “Iron Maiden Music Transcendence Through “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” Melodic Poem

  1. The most original idea presented in this post is how different the two are, but still work as a romantic poem. However, Iron Maiden seems to approach this story with a more modern vocabulary than that of Coleridge, it still has a place in romanticism. This blog post could be improved by expanding on some ideas such as nature’s revenge or how it goes back to transcending in a spiritual level. You could also link back to how the song talks about the character’s inner-struggles and how he overcome the odds.

    – Christopher Luong


  2. The discussion of archaism and reader comprehension of these aspects is very original. I feel as though I was brought on a journey into antiquity with your dissection of old vernacular. You’ve introduced some really powerful excerpts. Perhaps to improve your blog post you can go more into depth with the concept of transcendence. This post made me look at the poem in a new light, and I feel as if I am reborn after reading your blog post. I will never see poetry in the same manner, you have propelled me into an unreversible transcendent revelation. Good job man.


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