My Deadline Poems

Feb. 2016:

my dearest friend.
You always help me
in the end.

You are the one,
that is, albeit,
I will be changing you
to point nine eight.

Nov. 2017:
(Dedicated to Amir Abboud,
Seri Khoury, and Christoph Lenzen)

Change the bibstyle, so they said,
we must bring this to an end.
Five characters on average,
three for authors, two for year,
become just two digits,
for the order, as I hear.

If it does not do the trick,
natbib package is your thing.
But in any case,
for whatever trick you aim,
don’t touch baselinestretch –
that is really full of shame.

Feb. 2018:
(Based on a true story)

We’re all kind of fighters,
research keeps us alive.
But I don’t pull all-nighters,
I submit at five.

But my mind runs solo,
even when I’m asleep,
so I woke up at three,
counting glitches, not sheep.

Then an angel dropped from heaven,
so lucky me:
I had time until seven –
twelve AM, EST.

Feb. 2019:

One for the tex,
One for the bib file,
One for table 1,
And one for the paper title.

One for the abstract,
One for the intro,
One for the facts,
And one for the main flow.

One for section 1,
One for subsec 3.2,
One for the typo
At the end of section 2.

One for figure 1,
One for figure 2.
Figure 3 should be removed,
I’ll take the token for that too.

And if by next week
The paper isn’t broken,
I’ll take the token for the acks,
To thank the god of tokens.


Feb. 2020:

Outnumbered by files,
(Tex ones clearly the most)
I stared at my screen,
Felt like a ghost.

I needed to rest,
So I went for a run.
Running is best
And more so when there’s sun.

Now I’m back at my screen,
File-army still here,
But I feel I just might
Be now able to write.


Nov. 2020:

The sky out my window is black,
Deadlines are like this, you know.
I’m cutting myself now some slack,
Texting my friend on the phone.

As always we start being silly,
This time dinner and science are mixed.
So let’s see what’s cooking tonight,
But no choosing! The menu is fixed.

First, an egg-free algorithm emerges,
Then some pasta with sub-cubic sauce,
Served with salad of nodes and edges,
Now please pass the wine across.

The sky out my window is black,
But I’m laughing so much, in the end.
I lean in my chair, resting back,
I am lucky for having this friend.

Feb. 2021:

It’s that time of year again,
Deadline bells are ringing.
It’s time to polish and refine,
Make all the pieces fitting.

For me this line is upside down,
(A feeling quite intriguing):
It doesn’t mark the end of effort,
But rather its beginning.

So, hello abstracts, hello papers,
Nice to meet y’all.
You surely have my full attention,
No time for us to stall.

Please state your number (yes, it’s random),
And thou shall be assigned.
We’ll do our best to read you deeply,
Please keep this in mind.

You are the product of hard work
And soon you’ll get some rest.
You should be proud that you’re submitted:
PODC is the best!

Feb. 2022:

I managed to dodge the bullet
At least for a reasonable time.
But it hit now just before the deadline,
No doubt it’s the perfect crime.

I mostly want to sleep,
When usually I want to go running.
But the state of these papers, at best,
Is probably not that stunning.

Luckily there are cats in this world,
They cheer me up with their cuddling passion.
So in the meantime I’m back to juggling
Waiting for the polymerase chain reaction.

This one turned out quite gloomy,
But I never promised only poems that are funny.
Wishing everyone good health,
Surely tomorrow will be more sunny.

Feb. 2024:

There’s a yellow ribbon on my door,
I step in and go to my chair.
I take off my coat and sit down,
Pull the sunglasses out of my hair.

I drink my coffee,
And I read my mail,
I open the Overleaf tab,
And off I sail.

The world is still spinning,
PODC deadline again,
I’m deep into my computer,
Well, also paper and pen.

At the end of the day I step out of my office,
It is time for me to go home.
There’s a yellow ribbon on my door:
Everyone deserves to come home.