Dr. Francis McBeth, born in Lubbock, Texas, is Professor of Music and Resident Composer at Ouachita University, Arkadelphia, Arkansas, Conductor Emeritus of the Arkansas Symphony and composer for all media, His intense interest in the wind symphony has been a shaping force in its literature. This piece was written in memory of Claude Smith, one of the most important figures in American band music. Smith lived from 1932 - 1997, and spent most of his professional life in Kansas City, Missouri. Among his most famous works are Emperata Overture and Eternal Father Strong to Save, a setting of the Navy hymn. This symphonic poem was inspired by Psalm 137:
By the rivers of Babylon, there they sat down and wept. Upon the willows in the midst of it, we hung our harps.