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12 Love Poems for Your Wedding Ceremony

Published: Friday, Mar. 19th, 2021


A dozen timeless poems to help you express your love, written by modern, contemporary, and classic poets.

 

 

If you’re searching for the perfect way to say ‘I love you,’ need help writing your wedding vows, or want to include a special reading in your ceremony, consider one of these timeless poems about love and devotion!

 

Next, ask a friend or relative to get ordained to officiate your wedding.

 

Then, visit our Wedding Ceremony Script Library for sample wedding scripts to get started.
 

 

 

1. “Come and Be My Baby” by Maya Angelou

 

The highway is full of big cars going nowhere fast
And folks is smoking anything that'll burn
Some people wrap their lives around a cocktail glass
And you sit wondering
where you're going to turn.
I got it.
Come. And be my baby.

 

Some prophets say the world is gonna end tomorrow
But others say we've got a week or two
The paper is full of every kind of blooming horror
And you sit wondering
what you're gonna do.
I got it.
Come. And be my baby.

 

 

 

2. “Love Thou Art High” by Emily Dickenson

 

Love -- thou art high --
I cannot climb thee --
But, were it Two --
Who knows but we --
Taking turns -- at the Chimborazo --
Ducal -- at last -- stand up by thee--

 

Love -- thou art deep --
I cannot cross thee --
But, were there Two
Instead of One --
Rower, and Yacht -- some sovereign Summer
Who knows -- but we’d reach the Sun? 

 

Love -- thou art Veiled --
A few -- behold thee --
Smile -- and alter -- and prattle -- and die --
Bliss -- were an Oddity -- without thee --
Nicknamed by God --
Eternity --
 

 

 

3. from “said the shotgun to the head” by Saul Williams

 

Have you ever lost yourself in a kiss? I mean pure psychedelic inebriation. Not just lustful petting but transcendental metamorphosis when you became aware that the greatness of this being was breathing into you. Licking the sides and corners of your mouth, like sealing a thousand fleshy envelopes filled with the essence of your passionate being and then opened by the same mouth and delivered back to you, over and over again - the first kiss of the rest of your life. A kiss that confirms that the universe is aligned, that the world's greatest resource is love, and maybe even that God is a woman.

 

 

 

image of a wedding poem written in script with two gold wedding bands sitting on it before the ceremony

Modern, contemporary, or traditional... poetry is a perfect addition to the ceremony

 

 

 

4. “Let Me Not” by William Shakespeare

 

Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments, love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds, 
Or bends with the remover to remove. 
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark, 
That looks on tempests and is never shaken; 
It is the star to every wand’ring bark, 
Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken. 
Love’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks 
Within his bending sickle’s compass come, 
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks, 
But bears it out even to the edge of doom: 
    If this be error and upon me proved, 
    I never writ, nor no man ever loved. 

 

 

 

5. “A Drinking Song” by W. B. Yeats

 

Wine comes in at the mouth
And love comes in at the eye; 
That’s all we know for truth
Before we grow old and die. 
I lift the glass to my mouth, 
I look at you, and I sigh. 
 

 

 

6. “How Do I Love Thee (Sonnet 43)” by Elizabeth Barrett Browning

 

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of being and ideal grace.
I love thee to the level of every day's
Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.
I love thee freely, as men strive for right.
I love thee purely, as they turn from praise.
I love thee with the passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood's faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints. I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life; and, if God choose,
I shall but love thee better after death.
 

 

 

7. “Love’s Philosophy” by Percy Bysshe Shelley

 

The fountains mingle with the river
And the rivers with the ocean,
The winds of heaven mix forever
With a sweet emotion;
Nothing in the world is single;
All things by a law divine
In one spirit meet and mingle.
Why not I with thine?—

 

See the mountains kiss high heaven
And the waves clasp one another;
No sister-flower would be forgiven
If it disdained its brother;
And the sunlight clasps the earth
And the moonbeams kiss the sea:
What is all this sweet work worth
If thou kiss not me?
 

 

 

8. “I Loved You First” by Christina Rossetti

 

...
I loved you first: but afterwards your love
Outsoaring mine, sang such a loftier song
As drowned the friendly cooings of my dove.
Which owes the other most? my love was long,
And yours one moment seemed to wax more strong;
I loved and guessed at you, you construed me
And loved me for what might or might not be –
Nay, weights and measures do us both a wrong.
For verily love knows not ‘mine’ or ‘thine;’
With separate ‘I’ and ‘thou’ free love has done,
For one is both and both are one in love:
Rich love knows nought of ‘thine that is not mine;’
Both have the strength and both the length thereof,
Both of us, of the love which makes us one.

 

 

 

Young couple in a rose garden, bride in white wedding dress reads love poems to her groom

Poetry can be included as part of the vows or as a special reading, read by the couple or by a guest


 

 

9. “Poem for My Love” by June Jordan

 

How do we come to be here next to each other   
in the night
Where are the stars that show us to our love   
inevitable
Outside the leaves flame usual in darkness   
and the rain
falls cool and blessed on the holy flesh   
the black men waiting on the corner for   
a womanly mirage
I am amazed by peace
It is this possibility of you
asleep
and breathing in the quiet air
 

 

 

10. “Love Comes Quietly” by Robert Creely

 

Love comes quietly,
finally, drops
about me, on me,
in the old ways.

What did I know
thinking myself
able to go
alone all the way.
 

 

 

11. “Love Song” by William Carlos Williams

 

Sweep the house clean,
hang fresh curtains
in the windows
put on a new dress
and come with me!
The elm is scattering
its little loaves
of sweet smells
from a white sky!
Who shall hear of us
in the time to come?
Let him say there was
a burst of fragrance
from black branches.

 

 


12. “One Hundred Love Sonnets: XVII” by Pablo Nuruda

Translated by Mark Eisner

 

I don’t love you as if you were a rose of salt, topaz,   
or arrow of carnations that propagate fire:   
I love you as one loves certain obscure things,   
secretly, between the shadow and the soul.

 

I love you as the plant that doesn’t bloom but carries   
the light of those flowers, hidden, within itself,   
and thanks to your love the tight aroma that arose   
from the earth lives dimly in my body.

 

I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where,   
I love you directly without problems or pride:
I love you like this because I don’t know any other way to love,
except in this form in which I am not nor are you,   
so close that your hand upon my chest is mine,   
so close that your eyes close with my dreams.

 

 

Updated August 16, 2021


 

Need a sample wedding script that includes a special reading? 

Or want help writing your wedding vows? 

 

 

 

 

Friends and family members can officate weddings with online ordination through AMM


 

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