Not Knowing

smart-looking-man-in-glassesKnowing is all the rage, isn’t it?

If you know things, you’re a star. Intelligent. Clever. Astute. Able. No one doubts your abilities when you’re ‘in the know.’

But what about not knowing?


There’s no kicky idiom for not knowing. To be ‘in the not-know.’ Uh-uh. That doesn’t work.

Not knowing gets a bad rap.

But I love not knowing. I wrote an ode to not knowing:

“Whatever happened to that little one

That used to live in me?

The one with rose-colored glasses,

And giggles, so carefree?

The one mere toys could fascinate,

The one who played in the present,

Not knowing or caring what lay ahead,

So trusting it would be pleasant.”


There’s something visceral about not knowing. When I travel the way I do, I live in not knowing heaven. I get to not know every moment of every day.

For example, not knowing anyone in the whole country…

What kind of people will I meet? What language will they speak? Will I be able to learn it quickly? How will we understand each other until I do?

Not knowing what the food will taste like…

Will it be yummy, or will I be smiling and gritting my teeth to keep from hurling?

Not knowing where I am, where I’m going, where I’ll end up, or how I’ll get there…

By cattle truck?


Photo: Sylver Blaque / Paraguay

Or bicycle through mud?

On the back of a donkey?


Photo: Sylver Blaque / Chile

Or in an oxen cart?

Will I have to ride in the back of the bus?


Photo: Sylver Blaque / Iran

Or maybe in a cool time machine?


Photo: Sylver Blaque / Cuba

Maybe I’ll just have to walk. For hours…even days.

Yeah, there’s a ton of not knowing to be had in the world. I think everyone should get out there and get some before it’s all know-ed up!

I have friends who know everything about how their lives are going to be from today until they have kids who have kids. Me? I don’t even know what I’m doing tonight.

But since starting school and a blog, not knowing has been alluding me. I have to know things now: class, lecture, and blog posting schedules, exam dates and when assignments are due. There’s a lot of who, where, when, how and why in the academic life. I have to actually plan things out which, for a gypsy, is like drinking water from a sieve!

How I miss waking up and not knowing what day it is because there’s no calendar. I miss not caring what time it is because there are no clocks. I miss eating only when I’m truly hungry, smiling only when I truly mean it, being around people who get not knowing… and truly embrace it.

There’s something to be said for not knowing.


Photo: Sylver Blaque / Somewhere in the Bolivian Amazon

Something primordially oozy that I can’t live without…


Are you a knower? A not knower?

A bit of both?

What’s your take on not knowing?


Random Topic Tuesday


2 thoughts on “Not Knowing

  1. Pingback: Diary of an American Girl’s Journeys to the Forbidden Land (Excerpt 11) | Sylver Blaque

  2. Pingback: Bringing the World to Kids | Sylver Blaque

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