Here are some great ideas for inspirational readings for your wedding ceremony, including traditional poems and blessings from many different cultural traditions.
From Kahil Gibran’s “The Prophet”
“Love one another, but make not a bond of that love. Let it rather be like a moving sea between the shores of your souls. And stand together, and yet not too near together. For even the pillars of the temple must stand apart; and the oak tree and the cypress will not grow in each other’s shadow. Remember that love gives nothing but from itself. Love possesses not, nor would it be possessed, for love is sufficient unto love. And think not that you can direct the course of love. For love, if it finds you worthy, will direct your course.”
Now you will feel no rain, for each of you will be the shelter for each other. Now you will feel no cold, for each of you will be the warmth for the other. Now you are two persons, but there is only one life before. Go now to your dwelling place to enter into the days of your life together. And may your days be good and long upon the earth. Treat yourselves and each other with respect, and remind yourselves often of what brought you together. Give the highest priority to the tenderness, gentleness and kindness that your connection deserves. When frustration, difficulty and fear assail your relationship – as they threaten all relationships at one time or another – remember to focus on what is right between you, not only the part which seems wrong. In this way, you can ride out the storms when clouds hide the face of the sun in your lives – remembering that even if you lose sight of it for a moment, the sun is still there. And if each of you takes responsibility for the quality of your life together, it will be marked by abundance and delight.
1 Corinthians 13:4-8a
Love is patient and kind; love is not jealous or boastful; it is not arrogant or rude. Love does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrong, but rejoices in the right. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.
God in heaven above
please protect the ones we love.
we honor all you created as we pledge
our hearts and lives together.
We honor mother-earth
and ask for our marriage to be abundant
and grow stronger through the seasons;
We honor fire
-and ask we sail through life
safe and calm as in our father’s arms;
We honor water
-to clean and soothe our relationship
-that it may never thirst for love;
With all the forces of the universe that you created,
we pray for harmony and true happiness as we forever grow young together.
[since feeling is first], e.e. cummings
since feeling is first
who pays any attention
to the syntax of things
will never wholly kiss you;
wholly to be a fool
while Spring is in the world
my blood approves,
and kisses are a far better fate
lady i swear by all flowers. Don’t cry
–the best gesture of my brain is less than
your eyelids’ flutter which says
we are for eachother: then
laugh, leaning back in my arms
for life’s not a paragraph
And death i think is no parenthesis
From Walt Whitman’s “Will You Give Me Yourself?”
I give you my love, more precious than money, I give you myself before preaching or law; Will you give me yourself? Will you come travel with me? Shall we stick by each other as long as we live?
Traditional Irish Blessing
May the road rise to meet you, May the wind be always at your back. May the sun shine warm upon your face, The rains fall soft upon your fields. And until we meet again, May God hold you in the palm of his hand. May God be with you and bless you: May you see your children’s children. May you be poor in misfortune, rich in blessings. May you know nothing but happiness from this day forward. May the road rise up to meet you, May the wind be always at your back. May the warm rays of sun fall upon your home. And may the hand of a friend always be near. May green be the grass you walk on, May blue be the skies above you, May pure be the joys that surround you, May true be the hearts that love you.