Choosing readings or poems for your wedding

One of the many fabulous advantages of having a Celebrant-led wedding is the choice you have for readings and poems.

One of my favourite pastimes is researching new authors and finding other little snippets such as movie quotes or rarely-heard spiritual blessings from all reaches of the world, so as a result of this obsession I have an extremely eclectic collection to give you some inspiration, but don’t be overwhelmed – sometimes you’ll read something that hits you straight away, that absolutely fits with you and sometimes, you will take a while to find something that you really love and which depicts you both.

You can also choose religious and spiritual readings which you can’t do with a Registrar wedding.  I was married by a Registrar many years ago and chose a beautiful poem which really resonated with my husband and I, it was all about nature but, had the word “angel” in it.  I was told at the last minute that the word “angel” wasn’t allowed so the friend who was reading it had to substitute it for something else!  Crazy!

Here are my top tips for picking your perfect reading or poem

  • As well as considering the vibe of the wedding, think about your own style and what your own personal preferences are – romantic, traditional, quirky, amusing, cute, serious, spiritual and how you feel about love, your life together, and marriage.
  • Consider who is going to read for you – does it suit their style and their confidence levels?  Encourage them to practice!  If you are struggling with people to ask, I will read for you but it’s always nice to break up the ceremony with someone’s voice other than mine!
  • I’d suggest going for 2 readings – 3 at the most.  I’ll help you think about where they best fit in the order of service and how they contribute to the flow of the ceremony.
  • If you’re thinking about having a child read, again guide your Celebrant on their confidence levels and ability – a great option is for children to read together, take a couple of paragraphs each and give each other some moral support.  I always print out readings for people to read but sometimes, it’s good for the parents to do this and use the same practice sheets that the children have used in the lead-up.
  • If you have a big guest list or readers who may have quiet voices, use a mic.  I will always have my PA system and handheld mic that they can use, it’s always such a shame when a beautiful reading that has people holding back the tears or giggling at the front, means nothing to those further back as they can’t hear a word.
  • If you have someone who wants to write and read their own reading that’s wonderful, I’ve heard some fabulous personal renditions from the heart and some hilarious anecdotes.  Your guest may want to keep it secret from you but if you’re in doubt about what they have written ask a family member or friend – or me, to read it through first.
  • Don’t avoid choosing a reading that is popular, that you’ve heard before or which is mainstream.   If it means something to you then that’s the main thing and it will take on its own style and meaning for you.    I have heard the same readings many times and they always feel individual and delivery is never going to be identical to something you’ve heard before. 

This is one of my favourite poems and I’ve heard it 12 times this year, I never tire of it!


Wherever we go.
Whatever we do.
Whenever there’s me.
I hope that there’s you.

Now money is funny, it can make people odd.
You forget to be happy, and you live for your job.
And fashion is a passion, beset with a flaw.
You can dress to excess, but you’ll always need more.

And a muscle-toned body, may sound like a dream.
But no body is better, than chocolate ice cream.
What I’m trying to say, is that happiness grows.
Not through your wages, or body or clothes.

But in laughter and love, and in sharing your life.
In the arms of another as husband and wife.
So when you find someone who’s just like you.
Who laughs when you’re stupid and who makes you laugh too.

When you sit on the sofa, not hiding your flaws.
As imperfectly perfect, as the hand that holds yours.
When the fortune of kings, or purse of a beggar.
Won’t change how it feels, just being together.

When a cuddle and cuppa is all that you need
Well then, you’ve found something quite special indeed.

Wherever we go.
Whatever we do.
Whenever there’s me.
I hope that there’s you.

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