Friday, January 11, 2008

The Coin

The light bounced off the edge of the shiny metal coin. It could have been anybody holding it. A rich man donating alms to a blind man. A small boy taking it out for a cool drink from the vending machine. A beggar holding it between two fingers looking at it with dry eyes.

No matter who held the coin, it could deliver the bearer a joy of 2 rupees, a fortune of 2 rupees or a misery of 2 rupees.

The coin is being twirled. The twirling stops. The coin stands on its edge. The light coming off the coin's edge is smothered by a finger landing and resting on it. The stationary fingers signal a thought that has crossed the bearers mind

The fingers move swiftly with a precision of having done this earlier. Everything except the index finger holding the coin upright is cleared off the way.

Two fingers on the other hand form a circle, the thumb holding the middle finger with a tension comparable only to an arrow held by the bow string. The strain on the fingers makes the bearer's hand tremble for a while.
In a pulse of a moment, the thumb lets go. The nail contacts one side of the coin, at this immediate moment, the index finger lets go of the coin. There is amazing co-ordination at work.

There is a dull clink noise that comes from the coin, leaving a momentary red patch on the bearer's nail. The coin starts spinning on the wooden table. Creating some noise, that sounds like a violent scream.

One cannot count the spins the coin goes into and comes out of. During its journey, the coin becomes silent as if concentrating on its single minded purpose of spinning. It runs around in circles. Slowly coming to rest at a place still spinning.

Slowly but surely the coin loses its momentum as if it is tiring from the innumerable spins. It begins making a noise. It sounds like a Helicopter passing by. Then it becomes a clatter, as if many coins have fallen onto the floor.

And then, it breathes its last breath. The coin comes to rest. Showing the bearer the side that says "Two rupees" and "Do Rupaiye".

The Coin still remains worth 2 rupees.
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