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Mandy Coe

Staring For Beginners

Drunks and dogs donít like it.

If you are caught staring, it is no good pretending

to check your watch or study the ceiling.

These are signs of a novice.


Simply shift your gaze

to a mid-distance point. Cultivating a light frown

will give the impression of deep thought.


For most sentient beings, a stare

carries a voltage. The subject will sense

anything from a mild buzz to a jolt. Other symptoms

include increased heart-rate, chills

and hair becoming electro-statically charged.


Staring at part of a personís body

leaves you open to a high wattage stare-back.

Hostile stare-volleys

are to be avoided in confined spaces.


Babies under the age of three

experience stares as noise.

They can be woken from deep sleep by a stare

and will look around the room to identify its source.


Train windows are useful

for bending stares round corners.

But only heavily misted glass

prevents them from being sensed.


Keep stares short.

Set a maximum distance between you and the subject.

Tip: gazing and staring are two different things.

It is vital to remember this in relationships, especially

when your partner is naked.


Mandy Coe lives in Liverpool England. She reads her work  at poetry events across the UK. Her poetry has won a number of awards and has been broadcast on BBC radio and television. Her second collection is to be published by Shoestring Press in spring of 2004.

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