Each diagram has two lines, and is a picture of where the balls and your hands are at a given time. Time increases DOWNWARD. This is from YOUR point of view, looking out through the pattern. L is your left hand, R is your right hand. Each hand can either be in "standard position", or crossed OVER the other hand to an "outside position". The balls are numbered 1,2,3. Each ball will be doing one of three things.

- a) A ball on the top line is in the air. The horizontal location denotes where it will come down.
- b) A ball on the bottom line, next to L or R (R1) is in the hand.
- c) A ball on the bottom line, next to L or R with an up arrow (R^1) is in the hand, about to be thrown from that position (or has just been thrown).

AA 1 AA L3 R^2 BB 2 BB R1 L^3 CC 3 CC R^1 L2 DD 1 DD L^2 R3 EE 2 EE R^3 L1 FF 3 FF R2 L^1 GG 1 GG L3 R^2

The last diagram is the same as the first, so repeat forever. The important thing about Mill's Mess is to perform it cleanly, throwing each ball from the spot where you caught it. Don't drag the balls around. Note that one ball goes back and forth between the outside positions, and the other two balls exchange places in the middle.