Patriarch’s Quest for Harmony Throughout Patriarch’s Consonance he expresses his search for harmony in a variety of ways, but especially when articulating his love for Laura and, at the final poems, his desire for forgiveness from God. Patriarch struggles with his Internal conflict throughout The Rime Sparse and often contradicts himself from one poem to the next. The Consonance shows Patriarch’s evolution in his quest for inner peace and satisfaction.
When writing about Laura, Patriarch either praises her or curses her for putting IM through such emotional distress. In Patriarch’s 29th and 20th sonnets the contrast towards his feelings for Laura are quite obvious. In sonnet 229 Patriarch is bitter towards Laura for putting him through heartbreak; however, in sonnet 230 he Is at peace with loving Laura. Patriarch bluntly displays this contrast by opening sonnet 239 with “I sang, now I weep… ” And then with the opposite “l wept, now I sing… ” In sonnet 230 (Robert 384-386).
Patriarch’s uncertainty reflects his need for harmony, or balance with his love of Laura. Patriarch wants to feel content in loving err, but yet he knows that he never will because Laura Is dead and she therefore will never be able to return his love. Patriarch wants to be at peace with her death and wants certainty that they will meet again in heaven. After grieving his loss of Laura his entire life, finally in sonnet 361 Patriarch realizes how much of his life he devoted to Laura and how she “… Deprived all others of fame… Patriarch grasps that he was so engulfed In his devotion towards her that he exiled all others from his heart. He states that he should have spent the 31 years that he loved Laura seeking peace and fleeing troubles instead. Patriarch finally realizes that he erred in the way he lived his life and he now seeks forgiveness from God. Patriarch finally wants to be In harmony with himself, God and his fate. Patriarch now depicts Laura as Medusa, who has caused him to become “a stone dripping vain moisture. Patriarch uses this comparison to exhibit how Laura froze Patriarch’s life in almost every aspect; she caused him to become apathetic towards everything except his sorrow for her. Although he was exempt from almost all other emotions, It was still easy for him to weep and mourn her. Patriarch prays for forgiveness due to his obsession of Laura and how she completely consumed him so that he could see nothing else but her for so long.
Patriarch specifically asks mercy from the Virgin Mary In hopes that she will understand because they have the same mortal origin and he believes that she will be able to see his humble heart. In the last few poems Patriarch is begging for absolution so that he can enter the gates of heaven and in return find harmony at last (Robert 570-583). Throughout the Consonance the reader can conclude that Patriarch Is Indeed trying to find harmony, although he at first does not know what that Is. Patriarch struggles to find his definition of harmony and, like many of us, first finds it in a pseudo love.