The Wedding Ceremony Reading
Learning about the poetry of Alain de Botton
As a wedding officiant, I work with couples to create unique wedding ceremonies. One of my current wedding couples is a pair of writers who are very picky about how certain ideas are expressed in their ceremony. I mean who can blame them? They’re writers! Thankfully I don’t take it personally, and since they were so clear with what they wanted, I was able to capture it in the first two drafts. The thing we have been struggling with is the reading. They want the Maid of Honor to read a poem or a piece of literature during the ceremony. But they were sick of Corinthians and tired of the Velveteen Rabbit. They needed suggestions on writings that fit the ideas of the ceremony we were building together.
I have an extensive list of readings. I went through and sent them some options I loved, however I just got a shaking of the head. Nope, they are not quite right. When I sent the updated draft a few days ago with a placeholder of where the reading goes, I got a message back from the couple that said “We’ll dig into this. We are looking at some reading ideas over the weekend too – maybe Alain de Botton.” Um, who?
I immediately Googled him and Alain de Botton is a Swiss-born British author who writes about various contemporary subjects, emphasizing philosophy’s relevance to everyday life, including love. How come I’ve never heard of him? As someone who works with people in love, I have my theories and beliefs. I also use the beliefs of my couples to tell their stories of love through the ceremony. Time for some education!
I took a little journey down the rabbit hole of videos. Alain de Botton is quick and funny. He shares history and tradition. He challenged my beliefs with some new ideas. I hope he does the same for you. In the video below, de Botton asks “What is your madness?” Let me know your thoughts on romanticism and madness in the comment section below. Let’s go!