The Beetle, with apologies to E.A. Poe

Once upon an evening dreary, while I pondered, sick and bleary

Over many a student essay that could only make me snore,

Suddenly there came a tapping, as of someone’s fingers rapping,

Some bubble-bursting snapping just outside my office door.

Tis some student with a problem, popping gum outside my door.

This it is, and nothing more.”


As the tap grew more insistent, I upstarted, unresistant,

And I grabbed the bust of Elvis that adorns my office floor.

Many times I’ve tripped upon it, and my coffee dripped upon it,

Now my fingers gripped upon it as I headed for the door,

Stop that popping sound this instant!” I expounded with a roar.

Silence there, and nothing more.


So I flung the door wide open, and I could not help for hopin’

That the maker of the noise had flown as others flown before.

As I cast wild eyes around me, I saw something quite astound me

For somewhere about toe-level was a beetle on the floor.

An awful, staghorn beetle tapping six toes on the floor.

“Click.” It said, and nothing more.


Not a raven, this bold beetle made a beeline for the needle-

Point bag that is my comfort and that holds my earthly store.

In a moment it had ambled to the bag and up it scrambled

And hung on there like a bramble, while I muttered and I swore.

Yes, it clung there like a bramble, while I positively swore.

“Click,” it said, and nothing more.


Bug!” I yelled, unhappy, “Off my bag, and make it snappy,

Lest I smite thee with an altogether awful smiting roar!”

But the beetle, so annoying, in a manner almost cloying,

Kept its massive antlers toying with the bag that I adore.

Kept its clawlike clutches on the bag that I adore.

“Click,” it said, the thieving boor!


Then I smote him, loudly crying, “I will send your six legs flying!

That’s the thanks you get for eyeing my best bag upon the floor.”

Then with my cane I whacked him, smote him mightily and thwacked him,

Thwacked him back outside my chamber where he smacked upon the floor

Where his awful beetle carcass made a smear upon the floor

“Click?” he muttered. Nothing more.





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