POEMS FOR WEDDINGS:
DEBT Poetry/Poem by Jesse Rittenhouse (1869-1948)
MY debt to you, Belovéd,
Is one I cannot pay
In any coin of any realm
On any reckoning day;
For where is he shall figure
The debt, when all is said,
To one who makes you dream again
When all the dreams were dead?
Or where is the appraiser
Who shall the claim compute,
Of one who makes you sing again
When all the songs were mute?
WEARINESS Poetry/Poem by Witter Bynner (1881-1968)
THERE is a dear weariness of love…
Hand relaxed in hand,
Shoulder at rest upon shoulder.
And to me that pool of weariness is more wonderful
Than crater, cataract,
For it is a double pool
In which lie, silent,
The golden fishes of sleep.
TO MY DEAR AND LOVING HUSBAND Poetry/Poem by Anne Bradstreet (c.1612-1672)
IF ever two were one, then surely we.
If ever man were lov’d by wife, then thee.
If ever wife was happy in a man,
Compare with me, ye women, if you can.
I prize thy love more than whole Mines of gold
Or all the riches that the East doth hold.
My love is such that Rivers cannot quench,
Nor ought but love from thee give recompetence.
Thy love is such I can no way repay.
The heavens reward thee manifold, I pray.
Then while we live, in love let’s so persever
That when we live no more, we may live ever.
Who for his sake wished herself younger Poetry/Poem by William Cartwright (1611-1643)
THERE are two births; the one when light
First strikes the new awaken’d sense;
The other when two souls unite,
And we must count our life from thence:
When you loved me and I loved you
Then both of us were born anew.
Love then to us new souls did give
And in those souls did plant new powers;
Since when another life we live,
The breath we breathe is his, not ours:
Love makes those young whom age doth chill,
And whom he finds young keeps young still.
SONG FROM THE PERSIAN Poetry/Poem by Thomas Bailey Aldrich (1836-1906)
AH, sad are they who know not love,
But, far from passion’s tears and smiles,
Drift down a moonless sea, beyond
The silvery coasts of fairy isles.
And sadder they whose longing lips
Kiss empty air, and never touch
The dear warm mouth of those they love —
Waiting, wasting, suffering much.
But clear as amber, fine as musk,
Is life to those who, pilgrim-wise,
Move hand in hand from dawn to dusk,
Each morning nearer Paradise.
Ah, not for them shall angels pray!
They stand in everlasting light,
They walk in Allah’s smile by day,
And slumber in his heart by night.
PALINODE Poetry/Poem by Thomas Bailey Aldrich (1836-1906)
WHO is Lydia, pray, and who
Is Hypatia? Softly, dear,
Let me breathe it in your ear–
They are you, and only you.
And those other nameless two
Walking in Arcadian air–
She that was so very fair?
She that had the twilight hair?–
They were you, dear, only you.
If I speak of night or day,
Grace of fern or bloom of grape,
Hanging cloud or fountain spray,
Gem or star or glistening dew,
Or of mythologic shape,
Psyche, Pyrrha, Daphne, say–
I mean you, dear, you, just you.
POEMS FOR WEDDINGS: