Poe brings the reality of life and death to the forefront as he weaves a story within a story. When the narrator runs into an old man, the man begins to tell the tale of how he aged so rapidly. Only a day before, he was young—but lost his shipmates into a vicious maelstrom and the powers of the sea. After the initial terror of the event has subsided, he is able to examine the beauty and the power of the forces that can both provide life and take it away without note.
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