LettersLetter from Valerie about Dogwood Trees - 2 Mar 2008
Letters From All-Creatures.org and The Mary T. and Frank L. Hoffman Family Foundation

Letter from Valerie about Dogwood Trees - 2 Mar 2008

I wanted to share with you something my mother-in-law sent me. When I read it I was curious and after I googled it, all-creatures.org came up (because of your beautiful pictures of the Dogwood blossoms). The legend of the Dogwood must be true because your images match this so perfectly.

"The Legend of the Dogwood tree"

There is a legend , that at the time
Of the crucifixion the dogwood had
Been the size of the oak
And other forest trees.
So firm and strong was the tree
That it was chosen as the timber of the cross.
To be used thus for such a cruel purpose
Greatly distressed the tree, and Jesus,
Nailed upon it, sensed this, and in hi
Gentle pity for all sorrow and suffering said to it
Because of your regret and pity for my suffering,
Never again shall the dogwood tree grow large
Enough to be used as a cross, hence-forth
It shall be slender and bent and twisted
And it's blossoms shall be in the form of a cross ...
Two long and two short petals and in the center
Of the outer edge of each petal there will be nail prints,
Brown with rust and stained with red,
And in the center of the flower will be a crown of thorns,
And all who see it will remember.

Hope you have a blessed day.

Valerie Parmele

Reply from Frank and Mary Hoffman

Dear Valarie:

Thank you very much for sending us this poetic legend of the Dogwood, and for you encouraging comments about our photos.
While the legend is a very nice story, the natural history of the Flowering Dogwood, in its present form, goes back to to a time before the time of Jesus' incarnation.
We wish it were true, too.

In the Love of the Lord,
Frank and Mary

Return to: Letters