Bothness and Polarities

Do mixed people have any business at the poles? In the Arctic? Or in the Antarctic?

Sometimes you feel as though you are the only one at the party. As the Arctic explorer Frederick Cook said: “we were the only pulsating creatures in a dead world of ice.” To a scientist, viewing temperature in degrees Kelvin, the poles might seem warmish, or at least warm enough for a lot of molecular jostling. But in terms of human experience, it is as cold as hell. There is so much light. But it is useless. There is so much water. But it is useless.

At the poles you use references like “sleeps,” because “nights” don’t make sense to a circadian rhythm of 24 hours (the polar night is 6 months long). The polar lands are in effect “deserts”, void of the sorts of things humans need to live healthy, fulfilling day-to-day existences. In a word "lonely."

So, sure, there is "polar" in that the poles are lonely and sometimes when people don't "get you" it can be lonely too--"polar," I guess makes sense in that vein. 

There's "polar" as desert but, also another aspect worth considering. That is polarities, of something, something, something, something, something, which then becomes anti-something, anti-something, ad infinitum, this idea of Arctic and Antarctic as simultaneously opposites and mirror images, twins separated at birth subconsciously competing, one with the other. 

For when you get to poles, funny things happen. It gets dry. It gets cold. It gets dark. And light. But only dark and then light in the most excruciatingly slow procession. As mentioned above, imagine a single day lasting six months, a single night lasting six months. Night is wholly separate from day, totally different--they are like continent and ocean, fire and ice. Yet even at the poles, for two days every year, night one day dramatically and rather violently is ripped open to reveal a pent up sunburst of day, and day one day is felled by darkness. What looks to be discrete, in the most discrete of places, where rock is bloody rock and water is bloody water and lichens are bloody lichens and nothing is bloody food--even here there are differences of degree amidst differences of kind.

Maybe the idea of bothness suggests my heritages are poles.

In reality the poles are not unrecognizable to one another; there are big things in common. But the test is whether I, or others like me, have the ability to merge, mutate, shape, morph heritages such that I/we shall not be discretely bipolar, but so I/we can be both/and, and anywhere, everywhere.

I may never master the entirety of each heritage - but that may not be the point.

Maybe it is not a helicopter that I want, to go from point to point, or from pole to pole. Maybe the point is to stretch- to relentlessly bridge and wrap as much of the world as possible. To have the knowledge and forbearance to punish differences of kind and make them differences, of a finer, more rapturous sort--those differences of degree.