Life’s Transitions in Frangipanis


Apparently Frangipanis have worked their way in to the annals of mythology because, apart from their ability to withstand extreme temperatures without burning, they are also able to continue to produce leaves and flowers even after being lifted out of the soil. Now that’s quite a reference if you think about it.

I took this photo just up the road from our home and as I looked at it, I couldn’t help but see the beautiful way in which the colours in the petals simply and softly blended in to one another without any kind of fuss or effort.

My thoughts drifted off to the many transitions I’ve made throughout my life, and I suddenly found myself feeling deeply grateful for all those changes that came like the colours in those petals, softly and gently blending their way in to me, almost unconsciously at times. But then my thoughts also turned to those jolting and sharply contrasting transitions which are also so much part of my story and it took a while for the gratitude to build, but it came and in a strange way they where all brought together in a momentary celebration of life.

I felt good, not smug, just good. 🙂


About Don

I love life. Sometimes it makes sense, other times not. Discerning its underlying patterns and beauty always provides great reward and meaning and is a passion I ineptly follow. I feel deeply attached to nature and love the sea with its distinct moods and colour and find walking along its beaches wonderfully inspiring. Writing, sketching and photography is a sheer joy for me and the blog is one of the places I am able to express these pursuits.
This entry was posted in Beauty, Contemplation, inspiration, Life, Nature, Photography, Spirituality, Transformation and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

31 Responses to Life’s Transitions in Frangipanis

  1. seaangel4444 says:

    Clearly you have a right to smugness if you so choose! *grin* Brilliant post! The petals are a wonderful metaphor for your descriptions of transitions in your life. I love it. Thank you for sharing! Cher xo


  2. ptero9 says:

    I so love the correspondence you offer us between one’s life and how the flower presents to us something similar.

    I just heard Tuesday Afternoon on the radio this morning and this verse jumped out at me in a similar way:

    The trees are drawing me near
    I’ve got to find out why
    Those gentle voices I hear
    Explain it all with a sigh


  3. Holli says:

    I love this post and relate to what you’ve said. I don’t think I’ll pass by a flower without thinking about what you’ve said and appreciating it that much more.


  4. nrhatch says:

    Love the analogy you drew from that gorgeous bloom!


  5. Beautifully said, Don. Life moments do tend to meld together and upon looking back one can view the progress that is unseen while it is taking place. How very fortunate you are to be in a place within yourself to recognize this…as well as to notice the external beauty that surrounds you.


    • Don says:

      Thanks Melissa. I’ve always marveled at that gracious process that enables us all to integrate all the events of our personal stories in to that place of inner wholeness, and how our external world seems to aid us in that. It’s a wonderful thing. Again – thank you.


  6. Maybe “smugly good”??? 😉
    You described it beautifully, Don, the softly blending shades of color…in flowers and in life. Our stories are every hue from the dark to the bright, but it’s the soft pastels that make us calmly, genuinely content and grateful.


    • Don says:

      “it’s the soft pastels that make us calmly, genuinely content and grateful.” I warm to that Marylin. That’s exactly my experience with colour. That’s not to say that I don’t enjoy the vibrancy of vibrant colour, but the soft pastels rich deep in to a place that the others can’t get to. thank you.


    • Amanda Smidt says:

      Actually, Marilyn … I also love the way you have articulated this …


  7. Hudson Howl says:

    If our lives transitioned as they do in nature, life would be simpler. I’ve only significantly reinvented myself once. The life transitions you speak of, often occur without us knowing. Some self-inflected, some are transfer from others onto us, completely undetected an often with the most troubling consequence. Realignment is natural in life, speaking for myself it seems that way.

    These post where you internalize are by far my favourite and provocative. Often it is easier to point out the wrongs of society, then it is to point a finger at ourselves. We accomplishment more by the dispensing of our feelings of vulnerability and sharing how we see an interrupt ourselves as well as the world around us.

    Your Frangipanis is truly divine in appearance, an definitely a survivalist.


    • Don says:

      Such a thoughtful comment Calvin. Thank you. I’ve been thinking about those transitions you describe as being undetected and often with the most troubling consequences. That is so true. I think it was Socrates who said that the unreflective life is not worth living. Negative unconscious transitions can be dangerous transitions for the very reason that we don’t realize they’re happening. One day we suddenly find ourselves in a dark place and we’re not sure how we got there. On the other hand, they can be so gracious when they are positive. Goodness works it’s way in to our hearts without us even realizing it and we can’t even egotistically claim that we produced it. Thanks Calvin.


  8. Amanda Smidt says:

    Wow, the frangipani is such a visual part of the pacific – I spent a few years living in Auckland and this gorgeous flower not only flourishes there, but is often worn by woman as an accessory … and transitions, well, Don, like you, some transitions were just incredible and allowed me to blossom … others, hmm, well, at the time pretty harsh, more like walking through gorse, rather than sweet frangipani! However, all these transitions, good and ‘bad’ – have molded me, and only in retrospect, can I really appreciate the lessons … this I say as I move into yet another transition 🙂
    Thank you for sharing your experiences!


    • Don says:

      Amanda it so good to hear from you.You can certainly talk with authority about transitions and you’re right they do have the wonderful capacity to mold you according to the way you respond to them. I was reading just the other day of some of the cultural uses of the Frangipani in the Pacific. So interesting. They’re also very prominent here on the Coast where we are. Thank you for sharing. I’m sure you have an amazing story to tell. Again, so good to hear from you.


  9. ladyfi says:

    Beautiful shot, lovely thoughts!


  10. Robert says:

    Amazingly easy to grow, we salvaged a discarded branch after a pruning, it now is a tree.


  11. Shweta says:

    I loved the way you have compared life’s transitions with the colours of the petal here.Not many people are able to do so…thank you for sharing. Its a beautiful shot.


  12. Val Boyko says:

    Smile … transitions are nature. We humans are still getting our heads around it. Val x


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