The many men, so beautiful
And they all dead did lie:
And a thousand thousand slimy things
Lived on; and so did I.
Within the shadow of the ship
I watched their rich attire:
Blue, glossy green, and velvet black,
They coiled and swam; and every track
Was a flash of golden fire.
--- Samuel Taylor Coleridge, “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner”
1. These stanzas from the “the Rime of the Ancient Mariner” show the Mariner’s changing attitude toward
the creatures of the sea. What is the Marine’s attitude in the first stanza? What image reveals this attitude?
In the first stanza, the Mariner refers to the men as “beautifu.” He uses the visual and tactile image of “thousand
slimy things” to describe the monsters. The image of the “slimy” monster suggests a creature that is frightening,
disgusting, and horrific.
2. What is the Mariner’s attitude in the second stanza? Analyze the imagery that reveals this change.
The Mariner’s attitude changes to one of awe and fascination in the second stanza. Visual images such as “rich
attire,” “coiled and swam,” and “flash of golden fire” demonstrates that fact that the speaker
has now turned his attention away from the dead men and noticed the fascination beauty of the sea monsters.
Consider: And now nothing but drums, a battery of drums, the conga drums jamming out, in a descarga, and the drummers lifting
their heads and shaking under some kind of spell. There’s rain drums, like pitter-patter but a hundred times faster,
and then slamming-the-door-drums and dropping-the-bucket drums, kicking-the-car-fender-drums. Then circus drums, then coconuts
falling-out-of-the-trees-and-thumping-against-the-ground drums, then lion-skin drums, then the wacking-of-a-hand-against-a-wall-drums,
the-beating-of-a-pillow-drums, heavy-stones-against-a-wall-drums, then the thickest-forest-tree-trunks-pounding-drums, and
then the-mountain-rumble-drums, then the little-birds-learning-to-fly drums and the big-birds-alighting-on-a-rooftop-and-fanning-their-immense-wings
- Oscar Hijuelos, The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love
Read the passage. How does Hujuelos create the auditory imagery of drumming? In other words, how do the words imitate the
sounds they represent?
Hijuelos create the auditory imagery of drumming by describing sounds of every day objects being played as drums such as
“the wacking-of-a-hand-against-a-wall-drums” and “little-birds-learning-to-fly drums.” The words imitate
the sound by creating an image and sound in our heads.
Hujuelos repeats the word then eight times in the passage. What does this repetition contribute to the auditory image of the
The word “then” is used many times in passage because he wants it to represent the beating of drums through out
the paragraph. When one sound ends another one starts. Hujuelos wants to create a constant beat as you read the paragraph.
Consider: She looked into the distance, and the old terror flamed up for an instant, then sank again. Edna heard her father’s
voice and her sister Margaret’s. She heard the barking of an old dog that was chained to the sycamore tree. The spurs
of the cavalry officer clanged as he walked across the porch. There was the hum of bees, and the musky odor of pinks filled
1. Although the narrator “looks into the distance,” the images are primarily auditory. What are the auditory images
in the passage? What mood do these images create?
Auditory images and sounds such as “her father’s voice and her sister Margaret’s,” “the spurs
of the cavalry officer clanged,” “hum of bees,” create the mood of the passage. The mood of this passage
is going from frightened and scared to clam and tranquil.
2. The last sentence of this passage contains an olfactory image (the musky odor of pinks full the air). What effect does
the use of an olfactory image, after the series of auditory images, have on the reader?
The olfactory image of “musky odor of pinks” give the reader a sense of relaxation and peace. The auditory images
gave off a sense of fright.
Consider: It was a mine town, uranium most recently. Dust devils whirled sand off the mountains. Even after the heaviest of
rains, the water seeped back into the ground, between stones, and the earth was parched again.
1.) What feelings do you associate with images of dusty mountains and dry earth?
Barren and abandonment are two feelings that I associate with images of dusty mountains and dry earth. The writer tries to
create a sense of abandonment and dissertation by using images associated with the desert and being in the middle of no where.
2.) These are two images associated with land in the third sentence. Identify the two images and compare and contrast
the feelings these images evoke.
The image “even after the heaviest of rains, the water seeped back into the ground” and “the earth was
parched again,” are the two images used associated with land. The first image is about the storm and rain that filled
the mine town and the second image is about the rain drying up. The storm gives off an eerie and cold feeling, and the image
of the grounds drying up gives off a sense of warmth and becoming normal again.
A woman drew her long black hair out tight
And fiddled whisper music on those strings
And bats with baby faces in the violet light
Whistled, and beat their wings
And crawled head downward down a blackened wall
And upside down in air were towers
Tolling reminiscent bells, that kept the hours
And voices singing out of empty cisterns and exhausted wells
1.) Paraphrase the image of the first two lines. What mood does the image create?
The mood created in the first two lines gives off a sense of adventure and going into the unknown. The image creates a spooky
and mysterious thought, the women seems to be finding the undiscovered.
2.) List the auditory images in these lines. How do these images help create the mood of the passage?
“Whistled, and beat their wings” and “Tolling reminiscent bells that kept the hours” are two auditory
images in the paraphrase. The images help create a mood by adding more effects such as sound into our minds. We can picture
the eerie feeling of tolling bells in a dark and unknown place.