There are two types of knowing.
First, things I know that I don’t know: how to say plum blossom in Chinese or how to make notes drop like pearls from the piano, or why my mama died of ovarian cancer.
These are more like limitations. Ignorance acknowledged.
Then there are the things that I don’t know that I don’t know. Unknown unknowns. Not even possibilities. A whole sky of darkness surrounding something just as tenebrous.
Searching all night for an unknown absence is not only futile, but why would I be out looking in the first place?
As a naïve art student, an art professor told me to mix red and green paint, I had not ever in my life considered the possibility of grey. GREY! I had not been looking for grey. Yet there is was. Pure neutrality between the bright stars. Knowledge. Oh had I only known! Painting shadows will never be the same.
The unknown unknowns—black ice hiding on the road. Innocently taking your foot off the gas, who knew anything else would happen, other than slowing down. The desperate and horrible wreckage of what no one had reason to consider…
And yet there are other unknown unknowns. Goodness that arrives unannounced—sudden enlightenments that retain so much mystery they can only be called miracles.