Top 10: Emotional Readings For Your Ceremony
If you have been following our blog you will have read last week’s article about our top ten choices of contemporary songs for your ceremony played with classical instruments, in other words, moving away from the conventional while keeping a touch of tradition. Similarly, we have seen this often applied to the ceremony readings.
Whether you are having an intimate blessing at a venue or a Catholic ceremony in a church, it is no longer essential that your readings be religious. As long as they are suitable – and you should always run them by your celebrant, you can have anything from a poem, an excerpt from your favourite novel or movie, the lyrics of a song or even a personalised reading written just for you by one of you friends or family.
We have been so lucky to hear first hand many heart warming readings at our ceremonies and here is our countdown of the most beautiful and emotional ones.
10. THE AMBER SPYGLASS by Phillip Pullman
I will love you forever; whatever happens.
Till I die and after I die,
And when I find my way out of the land of the dead, I’ll drift about forever,
All my atoms, till I find you again…
I’ll be looking for you, every moment, every single moment.
And when we do find each other again,
We’ll cling together so tight that nothing and no one’ll ever tear us apart.
Every atom of me and every atom of you…
We’ll live in birds and flowers and dragonflies and pine trees and in clouds
And in those little specks of light you see floating in sunbeams…
And when they use our atoms to make new lives,
They won’t just be able to take one, they’ll have to take two, one of you and one of me.
9. HE’S NOT PERFECT by Bob Marley
He’s not perfect.
You aren’t either, and the two of you will never be perfect.
But if he can make you laugh at least once,
Causes you to think twice,
And if he admits to being human and making mistakes,
Hold onto him and give him the most you can.
He isn’t going to quote poetry,
He’s not thinking about you every moment,
But he will give you a part of him that he knows you could break.
Don’t hurt him,
Don’t change him,
And don’t expect for more than he can give.
Smile when he makes you happy,
Yell when he makes you mad,
And miss him when he’s not there.
Love hard when there is love to be had.
Because perfect guys don’t exist,
But there’s always one guy that is perfect for you.
8.TIME IN A BOTTLE by Jim Croce
If I could save time in a bottle,
The first thing that I’d like to do,
Is to save every day ‘till eternity passes away,
Just to spend them with you.
If I could make days last forever;
If words could make wishes come true;
I’d save every day like a treasure and then,
Again, I would spend them with you.
If I had a box just for wishes,
And dreams that had never come true;
The box would be empty,
Except for the memory of how they were answered by you.
But there never seems to be enough time
To do the things you want to do,
Once you find them.
I’ve looked around enough to know
That you’re the one I want to go through time with.
7. THE ONE by Kiera Kass
My love, you are sunlight falling through trees.
You are laughter that breaks through my sadness.
You are the breeze on a too-warm day.
You are clarity in the midst of confusion.
You are not the world,
But you are everything that makes the world good.
Without you, my life would still exist,
But that’s all it would manage to do.
6. LOVE IS A TEMPORARY MADNESS from Captain Corelli’s Mandolin by Louis de Bernieres
Love is a temporary madness.
It erupts like volcanoes and then subsides.
And when it subsides, you have to make a decision.
You have to work out whether your roots have so entwined together
That it is inconceivable that you should ever part.
Because this is what love is.
Love is not breathlessness,
It is not excitement,
It is not the promulgation of eternal passion.
That is just being “in love” which any fool can do.
Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away,
And this is both an art and a fortunate accident.
Those that truly love, have roots that grow towards each other underground,
And when all the pretty blossom have fallen from their branches,
They find that they are one tree and not two.
5. I LIKE YOU by Sandol Stoddard
I like you and I know why.
I like you because you are a good person to like.
I like you because when I tell you something special, you know it’s special
And you remember it a long, long time.
You say, ‘Remember when you told me something special?’
And both of us remember.
When I think something is important
You think it’s important too
We have good ideas
When I say something funny, you laugh
I think I’m funny and you think I’m funny too
…And I like you because when I am feeling sad
You don’t always cheer me up right away
Sometimes it is better to be sad…
I like you because if I am mad at you
Then you are mad at me too
It’s awful when the other person isn’t…
I like you because I don’t know why but
Everything that happens is nicer with you
I can’t remember when I didn’t like you
It must have been lonesome then
I like you because because because
I forget why I like you but I do.
4. IN A HUNDRED LIFETIMES from The Chaos of Stars by Kiersten White
I didn’t fall in love with you.
I walked into love with you,
With my eyes wide open,
Choosing to take every step along the way.
I do believe in fate and destiny,
But I also believe we are only fated
To do the things that we’d choose anyway.
And I’d choose you;
In a hundred lifetimes,
In a hundred worlds,
In any version of reality,
I’d find you and I’d choose you.
3. THE PROMISE by Eileen Rafter
The sun danced on the snow with a sparkling smile,
As two lovers sat quietly, alone for a while.
Then he turned and said, with a casual air
(Though he blushed from his chin to the tips of his hair),
“I think I might like to get married to you”
“Well then”, she said, “Well there’s a thought,
But what if we can’t promise to be all that we ought,
If I’m late yet again, when we plan to go out.
For I know I can’t promise, I’ll learn to ignore
Dirty socks and damp towels strewn all over the floor.
So if we can’t vow to be all that we should
I’m not sure what to do, though the idea’s quite good”.
But he gently smiled and tilted his head
Till his lips met her ear and softly he said
“I promise, to weave my dreams into your own,
That wherever you breathe will be my hearts home.
I promise, that whether with rags or with gold I am blessed
Your smile is the jewel I will treasure the best.
Do you think then, my love, we should marry – do you?”
“Yes” she said smiling “I do”
2. I AM LOVE by Unknown
Some say I can fly on the wind, yet I haven’t any wings.
Some have found me floating on the open sea, yet I cannot swim.
Some have felt my warmth on cold nights, yet I have no flame.
And though you cannot see me, I lay between two lovers at the hearth of fireplaces.
I am the twinkle in your child’s eyes.
I am hidden in the lines of your mother’s face.
I am your father’s shield as he guards your home.
And yet… Some say I am stronger than steel, yet I am as fragile as a tear.
Some have never searched for me, yet I am around them always.
Some say I die with loss, yet I am endless.
And though you cannot hear me, I dance on the laughter of children.
I am woven into the whispers of passion.
I am in the blessings of Grandmothers.
I embrace the cries of newborn babies.
And yet… Some say I am a flower, yet I am also the seed.
Some have little faith in me, yet I will always believe in them.
Some say I cannot cure the ill, yet I nourish the soul.
And though you cannot touch me, I am the gentle hand of the kind.
I am the fingertips that caress your cheek at night.
I am the hug of a child.
I am love.
1. BLESSING OF THE HANDS by Unknown
These are the hands of your best friend,
young and strong and full of love for you,
that are holding yours on your wedding day,
as you promise to love each other today, tomorrow, and forever.
These are the hands that will work alongside yours,
as together you build your future.
These are the hands that will passionately love you and cherish you through the years,
and with the slightest touch, will comfort you like no other.
These are the hands that will hold you when fear or grief fills your mind.
These are the hands that will countless times wipe the tears from your eyes;
tears of sorrow, and tears of joy.
These are the hands that will tenderly hold your children.
These are the hands that will help you to hold your family as one.
These are the hands that will give you strength when you need it.
And lastly, these are the hands that even when wrinkled and aged,
will still be reaching for yours,
still giving you the same unspoken tenderness with just a touch.
There are so many beautiful readings that narrowing it down a Top 10 list was near impossible, so below are some more that didn’t make it into the list above but we still wish to share them with you. Some of these are simply more profound than emotional and some even offer a hint of humor to your ceremony, making everyone present smile from ear to ear.
I LOVE YOU from The Princess Bride by William Goldman
Do I love you?
My God, if your love were a grain of sand, mine would be a universe of beaches…
I have stayed these years in my hovel because of you.
I have taught myself languages because of you.
I have made my body strong because I thought you might be pleased by a strong body.
I have lived my life with only the prayer that some sudden dawn you might glance in my direction.
I have not known a moment in years when the sight of you did not send my heart careening against my rib cage.
I have not known a night when your visage did not accompany me to sleep.
There has not been a morning when you did not flutter behind my waking eyelids…
I love you.
Want it louder? I LOVE YOU!
Spell it out, should I? I ell-oh-vee-ee why-oh-you.
Want it backward? You love I.
THE KEY TO LOVE by Anonymous
The key to love is understanding …
The ability to comprehend not only the spoken word,
But those unspoken gestures,
The little things that say so much by themselves.
The key to love is forgiveness ….
To accept each others faults and pardon mistakes,
Without forgetting, but with remembering
What you learn from them.
The key to love is sharing …
Facing your good fortunes as well as the bad, together;
Both conquering problems, forever searching for ways
To intensify your happiness.
The key to love is giving …
Without thought of return,
But with the hope of just a simple smile,
And by giving in but never giving up.
The key to love is respect …
Realising that you are two separate people, with different ideas;
That you don’t belong to each other,
That you belong with each other, and share a mutual bond.
The key to love is inside us all …
It takes time and patience to unlock all the ingredients
That will take you to its threshold;
It is the continual learning process that demands a lot of work …
But the rewards are more than worth the effort …
And that is the key to love.
A RECIPE FOR MARRIAGE by Unknown
4lb of love.
1lb butter of youth.
½lb of good looks.
1lb sweet temper.
1lb of blindness of faults.
1lb of self forgetfulness.
1lb of pounded wit.
1lb of good humour.
2 tablespoons of sweet argument.
1 pint of rippling laughter.
1 wine glass of common sense.
Put the love, good looks and sweet temper into a well furnished house.
Beat the butter of youth to a cream, and mix well together with the blindness of faults.
Stir the pounded wit and good humour into the sweet argument,
Then add the rippling laughter and common sense.
Work the whole together until everything is well mixed,
And bake gently for ever.
CLOSE CLOSE ALL NIGHT by Elizabeth Bishop
Close close all night
the lovers keep.
They turn together
in their sleep,
close as two papers
in a book
that read each other
in the dark.
Each knows all
the other knows
learnt by heart
from head to toes.
THE FUTURE from Les Miserables by Victor Hugo
The future belongs to hearts even more than it does to minds.
Love, that is the only thing that can occupy and fill eternity.
In the infinite, the inexhaustible is requisite.
Love participates of the soul itself.
It is of the same nature.
Like it, it is the divine spark; like it, it is incorruptible, indivisible, imperishable.
It is a point of fire that exists within us, which is immortal and infinite,
Which nothing can confine, and which nothing can extinguish.
We feel it burning even to the very marrow of our bones,
And we see it beaming in the very depths of heaven.
THE LIFE THAT I HAVE by Leo Marks
The life that I have
Is all that I have
And the life that I have
The love that I have
Of the life that I have
Is yours and yours and yours.
A sleep I shall have
A rest I shall have
Yet death will be but a pause.
For the peace of my years
In the long green grass
Will be yours and yours and yours.
THE AWAKENED HEART by Gerald May
There is a desire within each of us,
In the deep center of ourselves that we call our heart.
We were born with it, it is never completely satisfied, and it never dies.
We are often unaware of it, but it is always awake.
It is the human desire for love.
Every person in this earth yearns to love, to be loved, to know love.
Our true identity, our reason for being, is to be found in this desire…
…love is the ‘why’ of life: why we are functioning at all, what we want to be efficient for…
I am convinced love is the fundamental energy of the human spirit,
The fuel on which we run, the wellspring of our vitality.
And grace, which is the flowing, creative activity of love itself, is what makes all goodness possible.
Love should come first;
It should be the beginning of and the reason for everything