Wedding Vow from the Chinese Han Dynasty

Sarah Ritchie Readings & Vows

Photo by David Mielcarek, CINEMATICS by David M

New York is a delicious melting pot of ethnic groups and cultures—a Celebrant’s dream come true.  According to the U.S. Census Bureau, more than 10 percent of New Yorkers identify themselves as Chinese.  I have worked with many Chinese couples over the years and find there are wonderful customs, including the traditional tea ceremony which couples enjoy including in their ceremonies. I am always on the lookout for appropriate Chinese readings for wedding ceremonies, I recently came upon “Marriage Vow,” a reading by an Unknown Chinese Poet of the Han Dynasty, dated 206 B.C.-AD. 221.
O, celestial beings
Let our feelings for each other
Continue without diminishing
Only when mountains are leveled
To basins, when ocean waters run
Dry,  when winter is ripped
With thunders, when the summer sky
Rains snow, and heaven and earth
Are smashed together, shall we
Ever dare to be parted.

I found this reading in Treasury of Wedding Poems, Quotations, and Short Sories compiled by the Editors of Hippocrene Books (New York:  Hippocrene Books, 2002).