Once upon a Thursday dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,

Over some quaintly tedious office-minded chore—

While I nodded, nearly napping, as a fellow worker came a-chatting,

Often do I find her chatting, chatting at my desk’s right drawer.

“Tis the way of things,” I murmured. “The way of things in office four—

Only this, and nothing more.”

 

Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the mid-October

And each separate vying email wrought its ghost on screen once more

Eagerly I wished the morrow; vainly I had sought to borrow

From my iPod cease of sorrow – sorrow for an office uproar—

For unceasing is the speaking of the people here once more—

Nameless here for evermore.

 

And the silken, sad, uncertain pleading of each IM at its bleating

Thrilled me—filled me with fantastic boredoms never felt before;

So that now, to stop the speaking of this woman, I go peeking—

“Tis some new workflow being dropped off at my desk’s right drawer—

Some new policy or question added to my task list in the drawer;—

This it is and nothing more.”

 

Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,

I opened up the email from the AVP that I abhor;

And discovered in her manner breezily, words she typed up rather easily

Throwing to my workload oh-so sleazily, sleazily another chore,—

With scarce a glance toward my daily workload’s tasks galore—

“I just need this and one thing more.”

 

As I sat and there, I, blinking, read the email through, with cursor winking,

Attempted then to understand the reasons why she felt once more

My workload needed adding, why my task list needed padding,

Straining to perceive a rhyme or reason from this woman in itself a chore,

When my chatting colleague noticed that I listened to her words no more,

There she left me, glowering at my manners poor.

 

Now with lack of patience churning, all my soul within me burning,

The email on my screen with an investigating eye did now explore,

“Surely,” said I, “Surely this was sent to me in error

Let me see then, when the terror expects a response to her and more—

Let me breathe whilst I find out now and forevermore—

Details of this new and undesired work chore!”

 

Open here I click the email, so that all my screen it may fill,

When, suddenly, a stately R4v3n.gif took my attention and my cursor;

Not the least obeisance made he; not a minute was he caught by McAfee;

But, with mien of lord or lady, perched upon my IM icon of a door –

Perched and settled just above the icon of IM’s door –

Perched and sat, and nothing more.

 

Then this twitching bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,

And op’ning up a message window, typing words galore,

“Tho thy actions oft repeating, as a gif it is completing,

Ghastly grim and virus R4v3n showing off an AVP’s low firewall score—

Tell me then thy purpose in my mainframe and wherefore!”

Typed the R4v3n.gif “N3v3rm0r3.”

 

Much I marveled this ungainly gif to read discourse so plainly,

Though its answer little meaning—little relevancy bore;

For we cannot help agreeing that no living human being

Ever yet was blessed with having virus birds within computed door—

Any malware preening wings while seated above an IM icon door—

With such game as “N3v3rm0r3.”

 

But this R4v3n, pixelated on the image flat, anticipated

With that word, his full program now explained therefore

And no questioning was left me, no firm footing had he left me—

Till I scarcely more than muttered “Other gifs have shown before—

When I reboot, he will leave me, as past actions have proved before.”

Then the gif typed “N3v3rm0r3.”

 

Startled at the stillness broken by reply so promptly spoken,

Spoken, say I, though the word was written boldly ‘cross my screen once more,

Fearful of the repercussions of a list’ning virus download and discussions

With the IT team in India, I began the virus scan and tore—

Through my inbox, eyes still sweeping at a fast pace for evidence I tore—

Said the scan results “None – evermore.”

 

But the R4v3n still beguiling all my fancy into smiling,

Straight I wheeled my cushioned seat in front of bird on screen and door;

Then to Google set my searching “Raven virus icon perching”

Paranoia fancy, thinking what this ominous bird of yore—

What this grim, ungainly, ghastly, gaunt and ominous bird of yore

Meant when typing “N3v3rm0re.”

 

Then, methought, the air grew denser, perfumed from an unseen censer

Swung by Seraphim whose foot-falls tinkled on the berbered floor.

No answer came from Google, Bing or Yahoo – just referencing You-Know-Who—

He who wrote that famous poem circling famed subject of Lenore;

Thus I asked if this gif how he, too, pertained to that Lenore.

Typed the R4v3n.gif “N3v3rm0r3.”

 

“Virus!” hissed I, “thing of evil! Virus still, if gif or devil!

Whether hacker sent or whether company installed my entertainment for,

Desolate, thou sit and dither as I work and attend not to thee with her—

That ‘her’ I mean the AVP and certainly not the known Lenore—

But to thee I shall not think but once, only thou shall I ignore!”

Typed the R4v3n.gif “N3v3rm0r3.”

 

“Phisher!” fumed I, “thing of evil! Phishing for the corporate devil!

Sent to lead my thoughts in distracting chase galore—

Tell this soul with trouble laden if IT guys, though midst of raid in,

Will be needed hence to my computer files all to restore—

Though I hate to break their busy game time, just to all my files restore.”

Typed the R4v3n.gif “N3v3rm0r3.”

 

“Be that word our sign of parting, virus fiend!” I shrieked, upstarting—

“Get thee back unto the hacker and the phishing scam of lore!

Leave no gateway as a token of that LIE thy soul hath spoken!

Quit my desktop thus unbroken! QUIT THY PERCH ABOVE THE IM DOOR!”

Here my co-workers came running, and seeing not the bird form on the door,

Typed the R4v3n.gif “N3V3RM0R3.”

 

And the R4v3n, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting

On the desktop IM icon, just above that ever curséd door;

And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon’s that is dreaming,

And the inbox o’er him streaming throws his shadow on all chore;

And my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor

Shall be lifted—N3v3rm0r3!

 

–#–#–#–#–#–#–#–#–#–#–#–

 

Ruby: I wish I knew what to make of your staff meeting minutes.

Ginger: Can you fold them into an origami raven? I can deliver them to my manager in a more meaningful manner then.

Ruby: Are they still going to ask you to take minutes at future staff meetings?

Ginger: Nevermore.

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