Last night I did something I haven’t done for years: I shared a piece of my creative writing. While I do a lot of writing just about every day, I had taken a loooong break from writing the poetry and experimental short fiction that once flowed freely out of my pen.
But it was a friend’s birthday, a friend who was quite pivotal at a particular moment of my journey exploring identity, self, and creativity. In his honor I decided to resurrect this piece and rework it. I read it aloud at his celebration.
And now I present it to you.
This is dedicated to all the mixed-race, alt-sexual, gender blurry people, & everyone else who finds that “check only one box” doesn’t work for them.
After years of dichotomous choices
leading into an adulthood surrounded by pairs,
I begin to identify with the square root of 2.
Beyond the visible
Between what is whole
On stone tablets and papyrus
A secret so unsettling it warrants murder
it is irrational
demands for proof
only fully encompassed by the square root of 2
more than 1
a numerical quirk
which multiplied unto itself is the perfect sum of my parents’ love.
On my own:
a conundrum which cannot be entered into a census’ computer
fouling up the simple and harmonious duality of an endless
0 1 0 1 0 1 on off yes no either or black white
make a decision
my self tumbling along the square root of 2’s digital extensions
ever changing and ever endless
slipping like a ribbon between whole numbers
elusive but flirtatious enough to maintain interest
a mathematician’s dark-haired mistress
I am at home in the space between integers
an orienteer given a compass of genetic codes with endless variation
following the decimal point of my birth
without discernible patterns
coyly evading resolution.
Now I see I will never be fully content or at peace.
No, that’s not it.
I will never be done.
the square root of 2
will hold a place in the rational world nonetheless.
If you want to know more about the history of the square root of two, read the Wikipedia entry