Backyard, Vermont mountains, family, friends, a place at the table, fireworks in the valley, children dancing, candlelight & poetry.
…and I was myself,
and there were stars in the sky
that were also themselves
at the moment
at which moment
my right hand
was holding my left hand
which was holding the tree
which was filled with stars
and the soft rain –
the long and wondrous journeys
still to be ours.
-Mary Oliver, from excerpt from Last Night the Rain Spoke to Me
J & B hosted a backyard wedding; intimate, loving, casual, relaxed. We watched the weather, wondering if the rain would stop in time for an outdoor ceremony. The persistent drizzle drew guests under the tent, where all gathered for a cozy wedding ceremony, rain tinkling on the roof and tears and laughter sprinkled underneath.
“…all those late night talks that included “someday” and “somehow” and “maybe” – and all those promises that are unspoken matters of the heart. All these common things, and more, are the real process of a wedding.” -excerpt from Union by Robert Fulghum
Its hard for me to know what to write, how to caption a wedding blog post.
Yes, you can look at all the thoughtful details, and you will see some of the very special moments of this day. But how can I show you the subtext of these two lovers and the arc and color and emotion of their very particular wedding day?
For the past few years I have been asking, in advance, for the text that will be read at the wedding. This is wonderful research for me, as it gives new ideas for seeing and photographing, and because it is text selected by this particular couple at this moment in time, it gives me more of a window into what chord their souls are singing together.
I’ve always loved wordsmithing, and words are a particularly lovely muse for images.
The text below, as read at H & N’s wedding:
Love is a temporary madness, it erupts like volcanoes and then subsides. And when it subsides you have to make a decision. You have to work out whether your roots have so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part. because this is what love is. Love is not breathlessness, it is not excitement, it is not the promulgation of eternal passion. That is just being “in love” which any fool can do. Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident. Those that truly love, have roots that grow towards each other underground, and when all the pretty blossom have fallen from their branches, they find that they are one tree and not two. – Louis De Bernieres
So good. So true. H & N, may you grow your roots deep, and may you find that you have always been one tree and not two.
And for our parting images, a thoughtfully commissioned photo from the bride and groom, of each of their sets of parents, celebrating 43 years of marriage this year!
A special shout out to Sally Huntington from Smoke & Pickles for the absolutely incredible food, smoked on site! Also Jen Cahill from the Tangled Web for the fragrant mint-infused bridal bouquet (her website is playing the loveliest nature sounds out of my computer speakers right now) and Meredith from the Artisan Bake Shop for the decadent cupcakes that somehow looked perfect on an 80 degree day.
Here on the lawn of your mother’s house, you made vows to one another and an assembly of friends and loved ones also made vows, to support you in your marriage.
Your fathers read from the great poets of love and the romantic age, Neruda and Blake.
The places were set over a candlelit table fit for Dumbledore himself. Here you dined, and the wine flowed as well as the laughter.
From the checkout aisle at whole foods, to guitar lessons and heart to hearts with your sister, to a man asking for a woman’s hand in marriage, your paths brought you to this twinkle lit summer evening. May these images help you to carry it with you for the rest of your lives.
Ryan and Megan – blessings to you and your next great adventure.