February 14th, 2004

MHW

No, it isn't.

      
Marriage is love.


No, it really isn't.

Love is a many-splendoured thing, they say; and yes, it can be. It can also be hellish. It can tear you to shreds, make you curse the day you were born, wound you in places you didn't know you had places. You can cry because you don't have it, and because you do have it. It's not for the faint-hearted, and yet it's expected of, or hoped for, all of us. Even those who wish to deny us expressions of love rarely go so far as to say that we shouldn't actually love; and they say that they do love us, even if they can't stand seeing us kiss.

As for marriage - marriage is rose petals and organs and ceremonies. It's handfasting in the woods. It's a celebration of a hoped-for union before God, gods, no gods, friends, family. It's a life of standing together in, or against, the world. It's also familial pressure. Societal expectation. Child brides. Forced marriages. Property transfer. Dynastic unions. Prenuptial arrangements and bitter divorce. Spousal rape.

Nothing is ever simple. Marriage and love don't go together like a horse and carriage, don't distil into a nifty slogan.

I'll wear your rainbow on my page; just don't expect me to parrot the words.
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