I Know A Woman

Poet/Lyricist: 

Catherine Dalton

I Know a Woman was inspired by everyday people who have employed non-violent means to stand up for equality and the rights of others - by the everyday leaders who have the moral strength to step back from their own anger and fear to step up, sit down, rise up and hold on for freedom.

Premiere: 

Arlington Street Church Adult Choir; Mark David Buckles, director and First Unitarian Congregation of Toronto, Dallas Bergen, director

Level: 

Moderate
Item Voicing Media Price
HSP-110-01A SATB choir and soprano soloist, unaccompanied $2.25
HSPD-110-01A
digital download
SATB choir and soprano soloist, unaccompanied $1.35

Text:

I Know a Woman

I know a woman,
her name is Rosa.
She stood for freedom.
She would not move for freedom.
Rosa, why did you stay in that seat,
even when he told you to move?
Did you sit there for humanity?
Did you sit there for our dignity?
Oh Rosa, what I know is, you
refused to move and were arrested for me
so I could learn how to fight for freedom peacefully.

Freedom, precious freedom.

I know a woman,
her name is Alice.
She stood for freedom.
She marched at the White House for freedom.
Alice, why did you hold your sign high,
even when the crowds beat you down?
Did you march there for humanity?
Did you march there for our dignity?
Oh Alice, what I know is, they
sent you to jail where you suffered for me
so I could learn how to fight for freedom peacefully.

Freedom, precious freedom.

I know a woman.
Her name is Jane
She stood for freedom
She raised her voice for freedom.
Jane, why did you raise up your voice,
even when you stood alone?
Did you speak out for humanity?
Did you speak out for our dignity?
Oh Jane, what I know is, you
raised up your voice and held a light for me,
so I could learn how to fight for freedom peacefully.

We’ve got to rise up, sit down, and stand up for freedom,
precious freedom.

Program Notes: 

Although I could have chosen many woman, or many men, for that matter, I chose to highlight Rosa Parks and Alice Paul for their work in the civil rights and women’s suffragist movements, respectively. The name for the third woman in I Know a Woman came out of the work that was currently being done around in the U.S. for the rights of the LGBTQA community. She represents not only my friend, Jane, but also all of us as Jane Doe. Of course, we have a long way to go and there is much work to be done. At times it can seem overwhelming. It is during those times that I look around me in amazement of activists around the world. Most recently, I would like to note the brave actions of education activist Malala Yousafzai of Pakistan and Ukrainian journalist Tetyana Chornovol.
Performances

Arlington Street Church Adult Choir, Mark David Buckles, conductor (Boston) - World Premiere Event

First Unitarian Congregation of Toronto, Dallas Bergen, conductor (Toronto, ON, Canada) - World Premiere Event

Unitarian Fellowship of Lawrence, Susan Harper, conductor (Lawrence, ON, Canada)

Arlington Street Church Adult Choir, Mark David Buckles, conductor (Boston) - 50th Anniversary of the Selma Bridge Crossing and Bloody Sunday

First Unitarian Congregation of Toronto, Dallas Bergen, conductor (Toronto, ON, Canada) - 50th Anniversary of the Selma Bridge Crossing and Bloody Sunday

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