Postcards from Paradise: Holy Palmer’s Kiss

Len Whiting and Olivia Hussey in Franco Zeffirelli ‘s Romeo and Juliet (1968)

All Creation is Sacred, so this Palm Sunday, I thought that I would recall the beauty and innocence of those first moments of Eternal Romance between Romeo and His Juliet as they tryst at the ball, cloaking youthful flirtation in the chaste  vocabulary of Pilgrimage, Prayer and Palming.


O, she doth teach the torches to burn bright!
It seems she hangs upon the cheek of night
Like a rich jewel in an Ethiope's ear;
Beauty too rich for use, for earth too dear!
So shows a snowy dove trooping with crows,
As yonder lady o'er her fellows shows.
The measure done, I'll watch her place of stand,
And, touching hers, make blessed my rude hand.
Did my heart love till now? forswear it, sight!
For I ne'er saw true beauty till this night.


[To JULIET] If I profane with my unworthiest hand
This holy shrine, the gentle fine is this:
My lips, two blushing pilgrims, ready stand
To smooth that rough touch with a tender kiss.


Good pilgrim, you do wrong your hand too much,
Which mannerly devotion shows in this;
For saints have hands that pilgrims' hands do touch,
And palm to palm is holy palmers' kiss.


Have not saints lips, and holy palmers too?


Ay, pilgrim, lips that they must use in prayer.


O, then, dear saint, let lips do what hands do;
They pray, grant thou, lest faith turn to despair.


Saints do not move, though grant for prayers' sake.


Then move not, while my prayer's effect I take.
Thus from my lips, by yours, my sin is purged.


Then have my lips the sin that they have took.


Sin from thy lips? O trespass sweetly urged!
Give me my sin again.

~Act I, Scene 5 Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet

For More Postcards from Paradise Please go to Recuerda Mi Corazon! You will be grateful for the journey!

This Film is short and so Worth Watching!

May Life Rise Up to Meet You! ~Noelle


  1. noelle....what memories you have flooding in us all. i remember i went to see this with a dear schoolfriend, faith. i am sure we were both transported with allure, thoughts of romance, and heartbreak at the loss of such sweetness through misguided family disputes.
    and shakespeare.... replete with all the finery, music and customs of the day, cast with such a fetching romeo and his juliet.
    you have me yearning for first love all over again.

  2. Yes, I used to have a huge photo of Len Whiting on my wall at home after
    seeing the film. He was a huge heartthrob for many a girl after that film
    came out. And everyone wanted to look like Olivia Hussey--she is so lovely.
    I don't think that I have ever seen a sweeter pair of the starcross'd lovers
    than these two. Nothing like a little romance on a Palm Sunday eh? "A Kiss
    is still a Kiss". (smile)

  3. Aw, so poignant. Lordy, I was still young myself when that movie was made. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Spring is definitely in the air, romance everywhere!
    Lovely to be light and breezy remembering times of innocence and not many cares but those of the young heart is good for us all, thanks Noelle.

    Love Sue x


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