A Tale of Two Strings

Once upon a time there were two strings. They sprouted like fresh spring flowers from two old and mucky holes on a wooden plank. None of them knew what lay beneath the plank; where each of them led; and neither did they care.

Anyways, what is worth mentioning is that these two strings loved each other very much. They cocked their frayed ends up and talked of old times, when they both had been strong and new, not frayed and dirty as they were now. They also liked to think that through all the times from when they were young and strong till now, when they are frayed and weak, they never ceased to love each other. And so lived these two strings, immersed in each other, never caring to know where each of them stretched beneath the plank.

But nature has its rules, and one day she checked her big wall clock and decided that the strings had had their time on earth. So she sent a messenger to pick them up from home. She was a lovely lady named Death, and she came and stood looking at the two strings that were deep in conversation, and for the umpteenth time, she felt a tad bit sorry that their conversation would soon be over.

She interrupted them softly. She coughed — ‘ahem’.

‘Hello there. Good day to you both. I have been sent by a certain higher authority, you see, to give you some sad news. I am terribly sorry that I had to interrupt you like this.’

‘Go on, beautiful lady,’ said one of the strings, at which the other gave him a very narrow stare.

‘Er… you see, I am afraid your time on earth is over. You must come with me now to your true home.’ replied Death.
‘Both of us, surely?’ said the bewildered string, for they loved each other very much.

‘Yes, both of you. And now please close your eyes and think of the life that you have led, while I do my part.’

So saying, the lady made to raise the wooden plank while the two strings closed their eyes. The lady pulled at something beneath the plank and the strings went right through their holes and out the other side, still dreaming of their life together and feeling sad because they would no longer be together.

Had either of them opened their eyes then, they would have seen something they had never imagined before; that beneath the plank stretched a single string, whose two ends sprouted through two holes in the plank like fresh spring flowers, and had loved each other all their life.

— a string.

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