- 6 years ago
- Wedding: July 2013
Mr CL and I are having a civil ceremony and any readings we choose cannot have any religious content. I’d love to have something literary, but so many suggested readings are either really short, or rhyming poems which grate with me slightly.
Mr CL and I both love Philip Pullman’s Dark Materials and so I thought it would be cool to include a reading from one of the books in our ceremony. I particularly love the metaphor and symbolism in this extract, but can’t work out if it would be any good for us. We’re a young couple and have been together since we were teenagers, whereas this extract alludes to the speaker being much older (the character is certainly in her 30s at least). Do you think that the sentiments would be OK for us?
Extracts from Chapter 33, Marzipan, The Amber Spyglass by Philip Pullman
“Well, I don’t know if it was the wine or my own silliness or the warm air or the lemon tree, or whatever…But it gradually seemed to me that I’d made myself believe something that wasn’t true. I’d made myself believe that I was fine and happy and fulfilled on my own without the love of anyone else. Being in love was like being in China: you knew it was there, and no doubt it was very interesting, and some people went there, but I never would. I’d spend all my life without ever going to China, but it wouldn’t matter, because there was all the rest of the world to visit.
“And then someone passed me a bit of some sweet stuff and I suddenly realised I had been to China. So to speak. And I’d forgotten it. It was the taste of the sweet stuff that brought it back, I think it was marzipan… I remembered the taste, and all at once I was back tasting it for the first time as a young girl.
“I was twelve years old. I was at a party at the house of one of my friends, a birthday party, and there was a disco… Usually girls dance together because the boys are too shy to ask them. But this boy, I didn’t know him, he asked me to dance, and so we had the first dance and then the next, and by that time we were talking… And you know what it is when you like someone, you know it at once; well, I liked him such a lot. And we kept on talking and then there was a birthday cake. And he took a bit of marzipan and he just gently put it in my mouth, I remember trying to smile, and blushing, and feeling so foolish, and I fell in love with him just for that, for the gentle way he touched my lips with the marzipan…
“And I think it was at that party, or it might have been at another one, that we kissed each other for the first time. It was in a garden, and there was the sound of music from inside, and the quiet and cool among the trees, and I was aching, all my body was aching for him, and I could tell he felt the same, and we were both too shy to move. Almost. But one of us did and then without any interval between, it was like a quantum leap, suddenly we were kissing each other, and oh, it was more than China, it was paradise.”