I started to think about readings for our wedding ceremony almost as soon as he proposed. I have so many poems and book excerpts that I love that I wasn't sure I would be able to choose between them. Luckily, some of them of definitely not suitable for a wedding ceremony, so that helped!
We are having 2 readings during our ceremony. The first will be read by my lovely friend, Sam, and the second by my older sister, Kim.
Sam will read "A lovely Love Story" by Edward Monkton.
The fierce Dinosaur was trapped inside his cage of ice. Although it was cold he was happy in there. It was, after all, his cage.
Then along came the Lovely Other Dinosaur.
The Lovely Other Dinosaur melted the Dinosaur’s cage with kind words and loving thoughts.
I like this Dinosaur thought the Lovely Other Dinosaur.
Although he is fierce he is also tender and he is funny.
He is also quite clever though I will not tell him this for now.
I like this Lovely Other Dinosaur, thought the Dinosaur. She is beautiful and she is different and she smells so nice.
She is also a free spirit which is a quality I much admire in a dinosaur.
But he can be so distant and so peculiar at times, thought the Lovely Other Dinosaur.
He is also overly fond of things.
Are all Dinosaurs so overly fond of things?
But her mind skips from here to there so quickly thought the Dinosaur. She is also uncommonly keen on shopping.
Are all Lovely Other Dinosaurs so uncommonly keen on shopping?
I will forgive his peculiarity and his concern for things, thought the Lovely Other Dinosaur. For they are part of what makes him a richly charactered individual.
I will forgive her skipping mind and her fondness for shopping, thought the Dinosaur. For she fills our life with beautiful thoughts and wonderful surprises. Besides, I am not unkeen on shopping either.
Now the Dinosaur and the Lovely Other Dinosaur are old.
Look at them.
Together they stand on the hill telling each other stories and feeling the warmth of the sun on their backs.
And that, my friends, is how it is with love.
Let us all be Dinosaurs and Lovely Other Dinosaurs together.
For the sun is warm.
And the world is a beautiful place.
I have been a fan of Edward Monkton forever, and always knew I wanted this reading at my wedding. It sums us up well, I feel, and it's light hearted and fun.
So many wedding readings are long, very serious and full of old fashioned language that most people don't understand. Don't get me wrong, I love Shakespeare's Sonnet 116, but I think the majority of our guests would be bored by it, as it's not the easiest piece to relate to. And to be honest, it leaves me a bit cold. I don't get warm fuzzy feelings from it, and it doesn't inspire me that much.
A Lovely Love Story is much more our style and the message is still beautiful.
A big problem I had when choosing the second reading, was that everything sounded so preachy to me. You know, waffling on about soul mates and love at first sight and being in love feeling like floating on clouds. Blurgh, far too soppy for our liking.
However, I do love the excerpt from Captain Corelli's Mandolin which begins "Love is a Temporary Madness" and so this is what Kim will read.
Love is a temporary madness.
It erupts like an earthquake and then subsides.
And when it subsides you have to make a decision.
You have to work out whether your roots have become 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 promises of eternal passion.
That is just being in love which any of us can convince ourselves we are.
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 has fallen from the branches they find that they are one tree and not two.
This reading spoke to more than any other ever has. I love the fact that it talks about love without being soppy and delusional. It is realistic, the fact that the initial excitement of being in love will not last forever, and that doesn't mean that you no longer love each other, but that you love each other in a way that is bigger and more real than just being "in love".
Now, these two readings are not unusual to be heard at a wedding. From what I can tell, they are 2 of the most popular readings for civil ceremonies. At first I was a little bit put out by this because I want our wedding to be different and unique, and the thought of hundreds of other couples having the same things read at their weddings was not appealing to me. However, this didn't last long because I soon realised that every published piece of work would probably be used at some point.
So I decided on the readings based on the ones that meant more to me, and to us as a couple, and I don't mind if they are used by every other couple to ever get married, because each one will mean something different to each couple.
Plus, Sam has promised to wear a hat with some sort of dinosaur design on it to do the reading. It's worth choosing the reading just for that!