More Than Words

“Let me live, love and say it well in good sentences. “

– Sylvia Plath



With our little beach wedding seven months away, I’ve decided to begin the inspiration search for my vows.

Having a writer for a fiance makes the vow-writing process an intimidating adventure. Over our ten-year love story, Mr. Ostrich has made my heart skip a beat with just a few words (and silly drawings) in birthday, Valentine, and holiday cards. He’s truly a master of the English language, and I can only imagine that his vows won’t leave a dry eye in the house.

And while I don’t boast a fancy English degree and may not write words that bring the house down, all I want is for my promise to be something that he’ll always remember.

No sweat, right? 😉

So like every creative project I take on, I started out my vow making with some soul searching and some inspiration hunting. I was looking for poetry and prose that made my heart sing and could give me a starting point.

And after all of that, I’ve narrowed it down to these four selections that take my breath away every time…



By the Seaside

As we stand beside the ocean tide,

May our love always be as constant and unchanging

As these never-ending waves that pour beneath our feet,

Flowing endlessly from the depths of the sea;

Your love came softly upon my heart,

Just as the foam comes softly upon the sand,

And just as there will never be a morning

Without the ocean’s flow,

So there will never be a day

Without my love for you.

I pledge myself to you this day.

Our love will be as unchanging

And dependable as the tide;

As these waters nourish the earth

And sustain life, may my constant devotion

Nourish and sustain you

Until the end of time.

* * *



Happiness in marriage is not something that just happens.

A good marriage must be created.

In the art of marriage: the little things are the big things.

It is never being too old to hold hands.

It is remembering to say “I love you” at least once a day.

It is never going to sleep angry.

It is at no time taking the other for granted; the courtship should not end with the honeymoon, it should continue through all the years.

It is having a mutual sense of values and common objectives.

It is standing together facing the world.

It is forming a circle of love that gathers in the whole family.

It is doing things for each other, not in the attitude of duty or sacrifice, but in the spirit of joy.

It is speaking words of appreciation and demonstrating gratitude in thoughtful ways.

It is not expecting the husband to wear a halo or the wife to have wings of an angel.

It is not looking for perfection in each other. It is cultivating flexibility, patience, understanding, and a sense of humor.

It is having the capacity to forgive and forget. It is giving each other an atmosphere in which each can grow.

It is finding room for the things of the spirit. It is a common search for the good and the beautiful.

It is establishing a relationship in which the independence is equal, dependence is mutual, and the obligation is reciprocal.

It is not only marrying the right partner, it is being the right partner.

– Paul Newman & Joanne Woodward

* * *



The best love is the kind that awakens the soul and makes us reach for more,

that plants a fire in our hearts and brings peace to our minds,

and that’s what you’ve given me.

That’s what I hope to give to you forever.

The Notebook

* * *



I could promise to hold you, and to cherish you. I could promise to be there in sickness and in health. I could say to death do us part.

but I won’t”¦

Those vows are for optimistic couples. The ones full of hope.

and I do not stand here on my wedding day optimistic or full of hope.

I am not optimistic, I am not hopeful—

I am sure, I am steady.

And I know that I’m a heart man. I take them apart, put them back together. I hold them in my hands. I am a heart man.

So this I am sure—You are my partner, my lover, my very best friend.

My heart beats for you.

And on this day, the day of our wedding, I promise you this: I promise to lay my heart in the palm of your hands—

I promise you me.

Grey’s Anatomy

* * *

For my hopelessly romantic bees, what are the vows, poems, or quotes that strike a chord with you in the name of love? Would you rather write your own or celebrate through the perfect words of another?

And next up for this bride-to-bee? A little—make that a lot—of brainstorming, drafts, and edits of my thoughts and words for this little promise of mine.

Here goes nothing!


Mrs. Ostrich

San Francisco/Hawaii
Wedding Date:
April 2011
Our Names in Lights

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Add a comment


  1. Member
    jordynrose 6351 posts, Bee Keeper @ 1:57 pm


  2. Member
    Miss Twigs 126 posts, Blushing bee @ 2:36 pm

    I love “By the Seaside”!

  3. Member
    Aleanan 258 posts, Helper bee @ 2:37 pm

    We took the fruits of the Spirit and made them into our vows. I love them 🙂

    I, Jess Take you, Joseph to be my lawfully wedded husband.
    I promise to love and cherish you, always striving to esteem your
    interests as more important than my own.
    I promise to remain joyful even in the most difficult of times, for I
    know this is Christ’s will for our marriage.
    I promise to always strive to retain peace in our household.
    I promise to be patient with you, long suffering, and forgiving in all
    I promise to practice kindness and thoughtfulness towards you.
    I promise to pursue goodness and virtue in all ways as I relate to you.
    I promise to be gentle with you in all things, and to temper all that
    I say and do with love.
    I promise to always be faithful to you, forsaking all others, until
    death parts us.
    I promise to practice self control in all of my interactions with you.
    These things I vow by the power of the Holy Spirit who is at work
    within me, and with humble reliance upon His grace.

  4. elephant Bee
    elephant 6339 posts, Bee Keeper @ 3:38 pm

    Love “The Art of a Good Marriage”! We’re using that as one of our readings.

  5. glasses Bee
    glasses 2749 posts, Sugar bee @ 7:14 pm

    Those are really original readings. So much of today’s readings are clouded with the usual stuff (as is my ceremony!). I love these!

  6. glasses Bee
    glasses 2749 posts, Sugar bee @ 7:15 pm

    Sorry. *Our ceremony. I’m horrible. It just happens sometimes 😀

  7. husky Bee
    husky 1750 posts, Buzzing bee @ 10:38 pm

    I love all of your selections!

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