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With Apologies to Edgar Allen Poe

Once upon a midnight dreary, fingers cramped and vision bleary,
System manuals piled high and wasted paper on the floor.
Longing for the warmth of bed sheets, still I sat there doing spreadsheets.
Having reached the bottom line, I took a floppy from the drawer.
Typing with a steady hand, I then invoked the SAVE command,
But instead got a reprimand. It read “Abort, Retry, Ignore?”

Was this some occult illusion? Some maniacal intrusion?
These were choices Solomon himself had never faced before.
Carefully, I weighed the options. These three seemed to be the top ones.
Clearly, now I must adopt one. “Abort, Retry, Ignore?”

With my fingers pale and trembling, slowly toward the keyboard bending,
Longing for a happy ending, hoping all would be restored.
Praying for some guarantee, finally I pressed a key —
But on the screen, what did I see? “Abort, Retry, Ignore?”

I tried to catch the chips off-guard — I pressed again but twice as hard.
Luck was not in the cards. I saw what I had seen before.
Now I typed in desperation, trying random combinations.
Still there came the incantation: “Abort, Retry, Ignore?”

There I sat, distraught, exhausted. By my own machine accosted.
Getting up, I turned away and paced across the office floor.
And then I saw an awful sight, a bold and blinding flash of light.
A lightning bolt had cut the night and shook me to my core.
I saw the screen collapse and die. “No! No! My database!,” I cried.
I thought I heard a voice reply, “You’ll see your data Nevermore!”

To this day I do not know the place to which lost data goes.
I bet it goes to Heaven where the angels have it stored.
But as for productivity, well I fear, it goes straight to Hell.
And that’s the tale I have to tell, “Abort, Retry, Ignore?”

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