The Staring Contest

The Staring Contest

I see you up there.
You think I don’t, but I do.
You think you’re clever hiding behind a branch,
Less brazen than your cohorts,
After all, you’re smaller than they are.

You are more patient though.
At the slightest sign of recognition they flew the coop.
But you stayed,
Loosely concealed behind your branch,
Staring and waiting,
Watching and staring.

Your little yellow eye on one side of the branch,
Than on the other,
Your head jerking and twisting to see what gets left behind.
Yes, I see you.
I too am staring,
Watching and staring,
Staring and waiting.

You must smell how good this is.
And I’ll tell you – it is delicious!
But that doesn’t mean I’m sharing.
If I share with you, word will get out,
And I’ll never be able to do this again.

How long can you wait?
How patient are you?
Don’t worry I’ll wait around to find out.
I can wait.
I have nothing else to do.
Do you?

What do you do when you’re not staring at someone from behind a stick?
Do you scavenge or pick off your friend’s scraps?
No matter.
There might be a crumb left if you wait long enough.

What’s wrong?
You’re getting fidgety.
Can’t wait any longer?
Just a few minutes more and you would have a feast.
Off you go then, to the tree across the street,
I guess I win.

By Kevin Earl
16 February 2013

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