Weddings are a once-in-a-lifetime event where two people profess their love and commitment, sealing their union. Even more magical is a vow renewal, wherein couples—after anniversaries and major milestones—reaffirm their lifelong promises to each other.
During your vow renewal, you may want to add a poem to your ceremony. Poetry can beautifully express the emotion you are feeling. You can write an original wedding renewal poem, or you can use a classic like Shakespeare’s Sonnet 116.
Below are 15 examples of poems for a vow renewal ceremony, a mix of original and popular ones. Writing tips are also provided to help you write your own poem.
Romantic Wedding Renewal Poems for Your Ceremony
1. A Toast to Marriage
“Here’s to the days yet to come,
Here’s to the two who have become one.
With love that grows stronger each day,
Here’s to a future bright in every way.
May their lives intertwine, ever blessed to be,
Celebrating each moment so happily.”
2. Sonnet 116 (by Shakespeare)
“Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove.
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wand’ring bark,
Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.
Love’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle’s compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me prov’d,
I never writ, nor no man ever lov’d.”
3. The Journey Continues
“We started as two, a love so profound,
And with every year, our bond has unwound.
Through ups and downs, our spirits have soared,
Today, we say, forever once more.”
4. To My Spouse
“I fall in love with you every day
In every moment along the way
My heart skips when I feel your touch
My soul knows I love you so much
Through good and bad, we walk life’s road
My hand in yours to share the load
You make me smile, you dry my tears
Ease all my worries, calm my fears
This vow to you I solemnly swear
My commitment and true love to share
I’ll stand beside you forevermore
Loving you faithfully to life’s core”
5. Love’s Eternal Flames
“A love, once ignited, never truly fades,
It only grows brighter through life’s escapades.
Here we are now, in love’s warm embrace,
Ready to walk life’s journey at the same steady pace.”
6. A Joyful Renewal
“On this day let it be known,
In the presence of those with whom we have grown,
That years may pass, but love endures,
A steady flame that burns so pure.
Commitment unwavering, devotion intact,
Shared laughter and joy on this day we look back.
Our lives interwoven, hearts forever one,
Plans and dreams together, challenges overcome.
So today we renew the vows that we made,
In sickness and health, during sorrow and joy,
To have and to hold, to love and to cherish,
Faithfully together, no matter what lies ahead.
Cementing a bond that long ago was wed,
Celebrating our marriage, renewing our love,
With blessings abundant from heaven above.”
7. A Love Like Wine
“Like the finest of wines, we’ve aged with grace;
Our love deepens with every embrace.
With a toast to the past and eyes towards the morrow,
We renew our vows without a trace of sorrow.”
8. Unchanging Tides
“Seasons change and years do fly,
But our love remains, reaching the sky.
We renew today, what was vowed before,
Forever and always, our love will soar.”
9. A Renewed Beginning
“Standing here together,
On this blessed day,
As we lovingly renew
The vows we pledged that day.
We’ve weathered life’s storms,
Known its joy and strife,
But through it all, we’re still entwined,
As husband and wife.
Our love remains steadfast,
Though years have swiftly flown,
A beacon in the darkest night,
When we felt alone.
You’ve been my strength, my refuge,
My partner, and my friend,
And I promise here anew,
My love will never end.
Let’s toast this new beginning,
As we walk life’s road ahead,
Knowing that our bond is strong,
Though the paths twist and wind.
Hand in hand we’ll carry on,
Until our final breath,
For I’ll be by your side in life,
And beyond in death.”
10. To My Dear and Loving Husband (by Anne Bradstreet)
“If ever two were one, then surely we.
If ever man were loved 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 recompense.
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 persevere,
That when we live no more, we may live ever.”
11. I Loved You First: But Afterwards Your Love (by Christina Rossetti)
“I loved you first: but afterwards your love
Outsoaring mine, sang such a loftier song
As drowned the friendly cooings of my dove.
Which owes the other most? My love was long,
And yours one moment seemed to wax more strong;
I loved and guessed at you, you construed me
And loved me for what might or might not be –
Nay, weights and measures do us both a wrong.
For verily love knows not ‘mine’ or ‘thine;’
With separate ‘I’ and ‘thou’ free love has done,
For one is both and both are one in love:
Rich love knows nought of ‘thine that is not mine;’
Both have the strength and both the length thereof,
Both of us, of the love which makes us one.”
12. The Garden of Us
“We planted seeds of love, long years ago,
Watched them bloom, watched them grow.
Through seasons many, our garden has thrived,
Love evergreen, by time undenied.”
13. Two Souls Have Become One
“Many years have come and gone
Since we professed our love’s duet
Standing here today we reminisce
about the day our lives first met
Two separate souls on different paths
That fate somehow brought together
The moment that I looked into your eyes
I knew ours would be forever
Life takes you to places unforeseen
with many twists along the way
But if I had to live it again
I’d choose you every day
So on this day, I make my vow again
to walk beside you year after year
My heart, my soul, are yours to keep
until beyond Earth’s final sphere.”
14. How Do I Love Thee (by Elizabeth Barrett Browning)
“How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of being and ideal grace.
I love thee to the level of every day’s
Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.
I love thee freely, as men strive for right.
I love thee purely, as they turn from praise.
I love thee with the passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood’s faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints. I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life; and, if God choose,
I shall but love thee better after death.”
15. Poem I wrote sitting across the table from you (by Kevin Varrone)
“If I had two nickels to rub together
I would rub them together
like a kid rubs sticks together
until friction made combustion
and they burned
a hole in my pocket
into which I would put my hand
and then my arm
and eventually my whole self––
I would fold myself
into the hole in my pocket and disappear
into the pocket of myself, or at least my pants
but before I did
like some ancient star
I’d grab your hand”
Writing Wedding Renewal Poems: Tips to Remember
Reflect on Your Journey
Before writing a poem for your vow renewal, it is best to look back on how your life together has transpired. Think of the good times and bad times you have shared, milestones you have celebrated, and challenges you have overcome.
You can reflect on your relationship before you even got married; how did you get together? How have you changed since entering this commitment with them?
Besides your past, you should also think about what you want your future to look like. Where do you see yourself in the years to come? What do you want to do with your partner as you grow older?
The results of your reflection will make for heartfelt and touching material for your vow renewal poem.
Know the Basics of Poetry
As you prepare to write a poem, you may want to brush up on the elements of poetry. Doing so will make the process easier.
- Form → the structure of the poem—or, basically, what the poem looks like on paper. Some common forms include sonnet, haiku, limerick, and lyric.
- Meter → the pattern of stressed and unstressed syllables. Stressing sounds can give emphasis to certain parts or messages of your poem.
- Rhythm → how the words flow as you read them. This element includes the poem’s meter, but it also considers the speaker’s tempo and the pauses in between words or lines.
- Rhyme → sounds and their patterns. You will typically see end rhymes, which occur at the last words or sounds across lines. Internal rhymes can be observed within a line.
- Rhyming scheme → the pattern you form with end rhymes. You may see schemes like AABB, ABAB, ABCA, and so on.
Use Figurative Language
One way to elevate your wedding renewal poem is to use figures of speech throughout the text. Not everything has to be straightforward—using similes and metaphors, for example, can get your message across more vividly and creatively.
Figures of speech can also add humor and personality to your poem. A tasteful pun or a witty use of personification can make your partner smile and laugh.
There are some figures of speech that can give a certain tone to your poem. Alliteration, assonance, and consonance can make your poem more rhythmic. Idioms and proverbs can give a grand, wise aura to your words.
Give Yourself Time to Draft and Revise… Then Revise Again
Writing poetry, especially if you are new to the art form, can be overwhelming. Putting the first word down and finishing the first line can be the scariest part of the process.
Let yourself be nervous; that simply means you want to do your best. Do not stress too much about perfection. Just remember what you reflected on and write whatever comes to mind.
Once you think you have written everything you want to write, step away from the draft for a moment. Take a break. Once your mind feels refreshed, start revising.
Read your draft over and over. You can catch typographical or grammatical errors. There might be instances where you go, “I should write it like this so it sounds better,” or “Putting it this way makes it easier to read out loud.” Make the necessary edits until you feel satisfied enough with the poem.
Practice Reading Your Poem
Reading your poem out loud is helpful for spotting any errors you may have missed by just reading it in your head.
Likewise, this counts as practice for your big day. Familiarize yourself with how the poem rolls off your tongue. Determine the best spots to pause and how long to pause there.
The more you practice, the less nervous you will feel at your vow renewal ceremony. If it will help, you can ask someone you trust to listen as you read your poem. A fresh set of ears can provide constructive criticism and moral support.
Be Mindful of the Length
Short poems for a wedding vow renewal usually have 4–8 lines. Medium-length poems have around 9–24 lines. Meanwhile, long poems can have 25 or more lines.
Try not to write an exceedingly long poem. If it gets too long, you can write an accompanying letter for your partner that they can read in private.
Check with your officiant about how much time would be best. This might depend on your venue, itinerary, and other factors. Likewise, keep in mind that making your poem too long might make your guests lose attention.
Ultimately, your wedding vow renewal poem should be honest and authentic. It must come from your heart; leave the clichés for cheesy anniversary posts or another event. As long as you write what you genuinely feel, your partner will appreciate the poem you wrote—or picked—for them.