Could I find a place to be alone with heaven,
I would speak my heart out: heaven is my need.
Every woodland tree is flushing like the dogwood,
Flashing like the whitebeam, swaying like the reed.
Flushing like the dogwood crimson in October;
Streaming like the flag-reed South-west blown;
Flashing as in gusts the sudden-lighted whitebeam:
All seem to know what is for heaven alone.
From "Love in the Valley" by George Meredith
The showy, spring-blooming Dogwood is Missouri's state tree. Its large white flowers consist of four round bracts (not true petals) with a dark pink dimple at the end of each. It is a small to medium-sized undergrowth tree, preferring shady or semi-conditions conditions. Its twigs and fruit are eaten by wildlife, including song and game birds, deer, skunks, rabbits, and squirrels.