Poetry meets Iron Maiden

When I first started listening to Iron Maiden’s song of “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” I didn’t think that the beat or rhythm matched the beat of the poem by Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s poem. As I listened deeper into the song I realized that the beat of the music does go in fact with the poem, and it actually contributed to helping me understand the poem more clearly. When I first read the poem I read it with sort of a dark gloomy mood, since the story itself is pretty haunting. The song however begins with more of an upbeat rock rhythm, sort of creating a form suspense to help direct the story that is being told within the poem. The poem is about a mariner who tells the story of his ship voyage to a random wedding guest, in hopes of spreading his story to get people to appreciate nature. The story is basically about the mariner who kills a special bird “ the albatross”, with not much valid reason and is forced to pay the crime of his actions. In the song the beat remains the same up until to the point where the mariner is confronted by another ship that puts a curse on him, basically killing all of the men on the ship besides him. The beat of the music begins to slow down when the men of the ship are brought back to life, and basically begin haunting the mariner for his disgrace amongst nature. The pictures within the video at that moment present a sinking ship, zombies, etc,. As soon as the mariner begins to find appreciation of nature (with the sea creatures) the music begins to move at a faster pace creating more of an uplifting mood. By the end of the song the beat returns to the same that it was in the beginning, which matches with the ending of the story because his story seems to have impacted the wedding guest because he is no longer concerned about the wedding. He is described as becoming “sadder and wiser” by the end of the poem. I do think that the song is like romantic poetry because the beat of the music matches with the pace of the poem, and the images shown in the video relate to the events going on in the story (sinking ship, zombies, the colors, etc,.).

-Dariana Lara


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