Be It Therefore Resolved


Kim Stafford (b.1949)

In simple, true words Kim Stafford's poem transforms peace from "abstraction" into living, breathing action.  I was honored when he entrusted me with his words. “Be It Therefore Resolved" was commissioned in 2011 by The Congressional Chorus (Washington D.C.)  The poem (and Congressional bills) are written in the form of a resolution.

Stafford's response upon hearing this setting for the first time: 

When the voices come down to the simple moment of "hope seems small" I felt the power of the individual, the predicament but also the power of one to keep singing, waiting, watching, listening, ready for what may come next. I know what you have done with my poem will change the way I hear my voice in the process of my own writing. And I don't know that I have ever experienced such an intimate and generous consideration of something I have written as I heard in your setting, word by word, syllable by syllable.


Item Voicing/Instrumentation Duration Price Audio View Score Quantity
Licensed PDF
SATB, opt. satb quartet, piano, violin, cello 4:15 $2.00
JS-029 digital purchase only N/A
JS-066 SSAA, opt. SSA trio, piano, violin , cello $2.75
PDF download
SSAA $2.00
PDF download
instrumental parts (set)
violin, cello $10.00

Audio Credits: 

University of Dayton Chorale, Dr. Robert Jones, Conductor (note: flute substituted for violin in this performance )


Joan Szymko

"Friend: Download This Free Proclamation for Local Use "

Whereas the world is a house on fire;

Whereas the nations are filled with shouting;

Whereas hope seems small, sometimes

a single bird on a wire

left by migration behind.

Whereas kindness is seldom in the news

and peace an abstraction

while war is real;

Whereas my words are all I have;

Whereas my life is short;

Whereas I am afraid;

Whereas I am free—despite all

fire and anger and fear;

Be it therefore resolved a song shall

be my calling—a song

not yet made shall be vocation

and peaceful words the work

of my remaining days.


Licensed PDF


"The chorus and soloists were THRILLED with your piece and really enjoyed singing it,and as you can hear from the audience reaction,the audience LOVED your piece!" -David Simmons, director,The Congressional Chorus