Wedding Ceremony Reading Suggestions From Literature

Bride and groom holding two works of literature on their wedding day.

No matter what type of wedding ceremony you have, chances are it’ll include some type of reading something that resonates with the couple that helps tell guests just how they feel about entering into marriage.

Literature is full of wit, wisdom and winsome words about love. Here are some of our favorites:

Victor Hugo, Les Miserables

The power of a glance has been so much abused in love stories, that it has come to be disbelieved in. Few people dare now to say that two beings have fallen in love because they have looked at each other. Yet it is in this way that love begins, and in this way only. Let us say in passing, to be blind and to be loved, is in fact–on this earth where nothing is complete–one of the most strangely exquisite forms of happiness.The supreme happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved; loved for ourselves–say rather, loved in spite of ourselves; the conviction the blind have. In their calamity, to be served is to be caressed. Are they deprived of anything? No. Light is not lost where love enters. And what a love! A love wholly founded in purity. There is no blindness where there is certainty.

 e.e. cummings, I Carry Your Heart With Me

i carry your heart with me
(i carry it in my heart)
i am never without it (anywhere
i go you go, my dear; and whatever is done
by only me is your doing, my darling)
i fear
no fate(for you are my fate, my sweet)
i want no world(for beautiful you are my world, my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life; which grows
higher than the soul can hope or mind can hide)                                                                                       and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart

i carry your heart with me(i carry it in my heart)

John Steinbeck, 1958 Letter to Thom

There are several kinds of love. One is a selfish, mean, grasping, egotistical thing which uses love for self-importance. This is the ugly and crippling kind. The other is an outpouring of everything good in you – of kindness and consideration and respect-not only the social respect of manners but the greater respect which is recognition of another person as unique and valuable. The first kind can make you sick and small and weak but the second can release in you strength, and courage. Glory in it for one thing and be very glad and grateful for it.The object of love is the best and most beautiful. Try to live up to it. And don’t worry about losing. If it is right, it happens -The main thing is not to hurry. Nothing good gets away.

William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet

My bounty is as boundless as the sea,
My love as deep; the more I give to thee,
The more I have, for both are infinite.

I love thee, I love but thee
With a love that shall not die
Till the sun grows cold
And the stars grow old.

So dear I love him that with him,
All deaths I could endure.
Without him, live no life.

Did my heart love till now?
Forswear it sight,
For I ne’er saw true beauty till this night.

 

 

Photo Credit: Danielle Gillett Photography

 

about the author
kristen Kristen Ball is a freelance writer and editor in Brooklyn, NY. She likes BBQ, college football, antique stores and her friends. When she's not arranging words, she's arranging flowers

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