The frangipanni is to me
The most fragrant of flowers.
Its aroma wafted on the breeze
Holds memories of precious hours
Spent in a frangipanni’s shade,
Or climbing on its boughs.
It was a ship that sailed the seas,
And we were buccaneers bold
Who searched for ships which plied their trade,
And robbed them of their gold.
We could see the sea beyond,
From the branches of our tree,
And it was easy to pretend
That we were sailing on the sea.
We’d shake its boughs to mimic wind
Tossing wild and free.
My girl cousins and I would make
Garlands of the fallen flowers
That lay upon the ground beneath,
That fell in fragrant showers.
Sometimes we sat beneath the tree,
The young ones crouched by Grandma’s knee,
As she told us tales from home
Of England, far across the foam.
Grandma also loved to tell
How her two daughters married –
A double wedding, what a day –
My mother and Aunt Nell,
And how the bouquets that they carried
Were white and yellow blossoms picked
From Grandma’s frangipani,
Huge bouquets that reached the floor,
There were so many,
Threaded through with loving care;
And the brides wore garlands, too,
Wound around their hair.
Romantic dreams it wove for me,
The scent of frangipanni.
The dear gnarled tree still proudly stands
On Grandma’s hill for all to see.
Its scent calls to my memory
Those golden childhood hours
When we climbed among its branches,
And played amongst its flowers.