Update July 9, 2020

Submissions are now closed. Thanks everyone who participated; the bounties will be awarded soon!

Yaakov Ellis
Posting answers as haikus
Poetry contest

I'm sure that at least some of you have seen Yaakov Ellis's recent haiku answers. If not, here are some examples: (1), (2), (3).

In that spirit, I also posted a bug report entirely in limerick form (with a bit of editing from @ArtOfCode).

And then... I had an idea. Especially as we're in the middle of the Stack company community-a-thon, why not have a bit of light-hearted fun, encourage Meta.SE participation, and honor the poetic efforts of our hard-working dev?

So here's the deal.

From June 18, 2020 to July 2, 2020 July 9, 2020 (allowing a bit of wobbliness for timezones), you can submit your poem as an entry into this contest by posting your poem as an answer to this Meta.SE question.
This can be any type of poetry - haikus, limericks, sonnets, freeform - but it has to be an original poem.

Your poem must be Meta.SE themed, and ideally should meet all the requirements of whatever form of poem you've chosen (including syllable count, meter, and rhyme scheme).

You can submit any number of entries into this contest.

In-jokes and meme references are more than welcome (although an explanatory link might be a good thing to include).

At the end of the contest, at least 4,000 reputation in bounties1 will be awarded to the best entries (personal favorites and influenced by votes on the submissions), spread out across multiple posts. (How exactly it gets divided still remains to be seen, depending on how many submissions there are.) However, I will only be awarding bounties to those with under 40,000 total Meta.SE reputation. People who have more reputation than that can still participate, just not be eligible to win a bounty.

(Update June 23, 2020: After some consideration (and noting the relatively low participation), I've removed the requirement that an entry must be a poem in its own separate Meta.SE post and instead specified that it must be Meta.SE themed (and extended the deadline by a week). It's a bit much to ask for people to write an entirely separate Meta.SE post; instead, you can simply submit your Meta.SE-themed poem here on this question. (Entries that meet the previous requirements still count, though!2))

Rules all specified
Contest ready to begin
Everyone have fun!

1By myself, @ArtOfCode, @Aibobot, and @rene.

2Note: If you are submitting a separate post as a poem, in most cases, it's best if the content is not exclusively a poem, especially if it's a long post. If you're writing something in poetic form, if the content is important please make sure to include a plain English version as well.

  • 33
    +1 for knowing that my first name, when properly pronounced, has three syllables Jun 18, 2020 at 9:26
  • 14
    There once was a question by Mithical; Who had an idea quite whimsical; They decided a contest; To find who was funnest; And with it a gift rather mystical. Jun 18, 2020 at 9:26
  • 1
    Should just the link be submitted? Or the poem copied in as well? Jun 18, 2020 at 9:27
  • 6
    I would use a thank-you reaction on this post if I was able to Jun 18, 2020 at 9:27
  • @YaakovEllis - Doesn't hurt to put the poem in as well.
    – Mithical
    Jun 18, 2020 at 9:27
  • Posts in the Sandbox – don't count as regular ones – I guess, or do they?
    – Glorfindel Mod
    Jun 18, 2020 at 9:28
  • @Glorfindel Unfortunately / they do not count in this case / isn't regular. It has to be an actual MSE post.
    – Mithical
    Jun 18, 2020 at 9:30
  • That is a funny coincidence for me. I just replied to some meta.stackoverflow.com limericks with haiku.
    – philipxy
    Jun 18, 2020 at 9:53
  • 1
    Go on - I'll throw in an extra 1k reputation in bounties
    – ArtOfCode
    Jun 18, 2020 at 10:06
  • 1
    Is there a requirement that poems must scan correctly, or otherwise correctly fit the pattern of their type of poetry?
    – ArtOfCode
    Jun 18, 2020 at 10:08
  • 2
    @ArtOfCode - While technically you can claim that it's freeform if the scansion is off, let's just say that if it's failed it is unlikely to win. :)
    – Mithical
    Jun 18, 2020 at 10:08
  • This should be featured, spread some joy :)
    – Remy
    Jun 18, 2020 at 10:40
  • 3
    As I'm technically ruled out to win I'll throw in 1k of my reputation as well.
    – rene
    Jun 18, 2020 at 11:12
  • 1
    You might want to recommend that people submitting these include a small link (even add the markdown for adding a sub 1 note) pointing to this contest within their answer, This would avoid people thinking an answer was being given in a sardonic manner (and spread the word more as a bonus) Jun 18, 2020 at 19:02
  • 3
    Since the competition does not accept edit comments, here is just a honourable entry.
    – VLAZ
    Jun 19, 2020 at 9:11

17 Answers 17


My sonnet:

A user thought to pay a just reward,
by adding bounty payment on a post,
and after setting what they could afford,
they clicked start and sent it on to the host.
Now off to share the link with Tavern crowd,
did Mithical set out at once with glee,
and what they saw made them stop feeling proud,
'cause printed there was four instead of three.
Quick on to Meta to report the case,
came our brave hero armed with prose and rhyme,
thus when I saw it — turned red in my face,
and sought to repro' and fix in no time.
I now announce the squashing of the bug,
it's now forgotten — swept under the rug.


'Twas crinkling, and the regulars
   on Meta Tavern squawked and typed;
About some new particulars
   For which no one was hyped.

Why was the tooltip changed so fast,
   and there was no discussion had?
We thought that this was in the past,
   is clarity a fad?

The brouhaha gained speed and steam
   with many users chiming in:
What happened to the CM team?
   Do they not hear the din?

After an hour and maybe more
   an answer posted quite sincere:
We must improve the process of yore
   to make these things more clear.

Reverted has the tooltip been,
   moar research is required here.
And when a change is made again
   we'll publicize, no fear!

And so on MSE they saw:
   Though now and then mistakes are made;
This is no sign of fatal flaw,
   good feelings will not fade.

'Twas crinkling, and the regulars
   on Meta Tavern sat back down,
because from new particulars -
   a smile made out of frown

(Inspired by Jabberwocky, which appears to be in 8-8-8-6 meter for the most part with an ABAB rhyme scheme. "moar" spelling intentional)

  • 2
    I enjoyed your poem, it's one of the few that rhymes, but not only, it's clever and it's really about MSE community. Worthy of a bounty, fear not Simona. You have an admirer here. Jul 22, 2020 at 21:17
  • Its in the list. The logistics of bounty awarding is messy, so it might take a while for us to get around to it ;) Jul 23, 2020 at 12:45

This user came with a just doubt,
"What if I lose my hard-earned reputation out?"

They wanted some attention to their question nice,
So decided to pay a 50 reputation price.

There seemed just a single limitation,
Afraid they were to lose on other sites their reputation.

But such is not the case,
One is not charged at another place.

They may move ahead with this generous deed,
And pay this confusion no heed.

This is the short poem I posted here.


My poem:

I recently came across a post

And I said to myself holy ghost

It's mine, that's Daniil

But then I stood still

Why vote for myself? I never boast


A haiku

Tooltip is zealous
in promoting temperance.
It is frustrating.


A haiku from my answer to this question

Web applications
yes we have a site for them
find your answers there


I remember posting haiku on at least three (quite old now) posts before: first, second and third. Having to chose, I think the first one is probably the best one in the set, if anything because I actually tried to make it work when translated to Japanese.

ユニコーン (は)
(の) 冬の兆候

Yunikōn (wa)
yuki ni kirameku
(no) fuyu no chōkō

The Unicorn
glittering in snows
sign of winter

This haiku was written as a reference to the old 2012 Winter Bash site easter egg.

enter image description here

To actually fit the 5-7-5 "on" requirement, you have to drop the two particles "wa" and "no" on the first and third verse, which in turn makes the wording far less "grammatically correct" I fear. At least it somehow match the "Kigo" requirement in a way - there is a "seasonal reference" in the poem, but it only makes sense as a Meta-specific seasonal reference.

Back when I wrote this, Winter Bash always ended up making a reference to unicorns in a way or the other, so you could say "unicorns" were a sign of Winter in a way.

  • A bounty worth 300 reputation will be awarded on this answer.
    – Mithical
    Jul 21, 2020 at 15:51
  • I'm aware - it's just a (relatively) recent answer of yours since the bounty can't be awarded on this post (due to requirements for increasing bounty size)
    – Mithical
    Jul 22, 2020 at 7:47

For those moderating the C and C++ tags at SO:

What is the result
iplusplus plus iplusplus
Endlessly we ask

The unspecified
evaluation order
Only half the truth

Trying to explain
Behaviour undefined
Outcome is unknown

A long-winded speech
Of some abstract sequence points
Wasted on deaf ears

Close as duplicate
Over and over again
Pointless busy-work done

  • 2
    Most vexing poetry:( Jun 24, 2020 at 17:22

I know that the contest is closed, but I feel like I still have to post this here anyway:

Once upon a Wint Bash morrow, while I pondered, full of sorrow
Over endless db rows recording stats of games galore —
While I tried, nearly succeeding, to prevent the mounds of cheating
Suddenly there came a vision, pinging on my chatroom door —
“What could that be,” I muttered, “blinking on my chatroom door —
   Only this and nothing more.”

And the silken, bright, and forlorn fur of our fave-rit unicorn
Thrilled me — filled me with a fantastic hope that I had not felt before;
And I thought: “Avast the fearing, soon there will be so much cheering,
When our hero, bold and mighty, shows distinction on the quizzing floor;
Will it be you, who can help our 'corn find its way to succor?
   Only this and nothing more.”


Made a (now closed) bug report, and figured I'd use a bit of a different format. I chose a Haiku Sonnet, which is a series of 4 haiku followed by a couplet with either 5 or 7 syllables for either line.

Although the bug report's now closed, it appears that that doesn't break the rules of the contest anymore.

Hope you enjoy.

"Others with this badge,"
Has issues with its spacing
And its alignment

With names, long displayed,
The list item appears wrong,
And might need some work

With names like Shog9,
There's not a visual bug,
And it renders fine

But, others are long
Shadow Wizard Wearing Mask
Throws alignment off

Could this please be looked into,
Perhaps tagged ?


Comment lock does not prevent automatic duplicate comments

Question comment locked

Autodupe comment later

Is this intended?


My first attempt at creating a haiku

Edit I saw done
Left in state of confusion
To meta I turned


A haiku to mark the end of the contest:

Contest is over
Results are to be announced
I am excited

  • 3
    Thank you @Mithical for such a wonderful contest. Jul 10, 2020 at 11:51

Max Muscle Keto

A cry from an outsider

Snuffed - post has been nuked!


Browser becalmed,

Not one octet stirrs the wires,

I hate PHP.

Noob C bean counter,

fails to declare enough space,

missing NUL at end*$.04..bnNy&KCx??......??}}4500spreeyciv..?>||")^


What with the change of rules I suppose I can finally post my (updated) limerick as an answer:

There once was a question from Mithical

Who had an idea; quite whimsical

    A contest, played globally

    With the topic of poetry

And the prize; a gift rather mystical.

The original for posterity, changed because I wasn't a fan of the poor rhyming of contest/funnest.

There once was a question by Mithical

Who had an idea; quite whimsical

    They decided a contest

    To find who was funnest

And with it a gift rather mystical.


Non-competing entry in my answer Has activity on the site slowed down since COVID-19?, accompanied by a nice illustration:

Activity grew,
looking at the question count
on Stack Overflow

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .