Yes, I know the answer.
I know the answer to…
I know the answer to the kōan:
“What is the sound of one hand clapping?”
I swing each arm forward.
Right-handed arc. Thunderclap of silence.
Left-handed arc. Thunderclap of silence.
Palm-pushed air puffs up breezes,
Which way does the wind blow?
Which breeze do I follow?
No, I do not know the answer.
William Swarts is the author of Strickland Plains and Other Poems, Treehouse of the Mind, and Harmonies Unheard, to be released in the Fall. He is a First Prize winner in the Litchfield Review’s annual Poetry Contest. His poetry has been published in over 70 literary reviews and journals including Into the Teeth of the Wind, Headwaters Magazine, Steam Ticket, Rockhurst Review, Sendero, and Hawaii Pacific Review. He received his B.A. in English Literature from Brown University, his J.D. from University of Pennsylvania. He has practiced law in New York City and Paris. He studied with Bolligen Prize-winner David Ignatow at the 92nd Street YM-YWHA Poetry Center in New York City. He lives in western North Carolina.