Richard Cory

Poem By Edwin Arlington Robinson

Whenever Richard Cory went down town,
We people on the pavement looked at him:
He was a gentleman from sole to crown,
Clean favored, and imperially slim.

And he was always quietly arrayed,
And he was always human when he talked;
But still he fluttered pulses when he said,
'Good-morning,' and he glittered when he walked.

And he was rich - yes, richer than a king -
And admirably schooled in every grace:
In fine, we thought that he was everything
To make us wish that we were in his place.

So on we worked, and waited for the light,
And went without the meat, and cursed the bread;
And Richard Cory, one calm summer night,
Went home and put a bullet through his head.

Comments about Richard Cory

I'm not sure Mr Robinson's poem would be applicable to Jeffrey Epstein's suicide, at all.
I taught this poem in high school and I still like it very much. Richard Cory's suicide seems at odds with the precise rhymes and meter. Where people are concerned, appearances can be deceptive.
Shake me wake
My father, When mom left, he said one day that he would do it. In life, dad always kept his word.
I read this poem in junior high school in the early '60's. I rediscovered it when Simon and Garfunkel put it to music; I'm not sure which album, but it's certainly worth listening to.


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Other poems of ROBINSON

Ben Trovato

The Deacon thought. “I know them,” he began,
“And they are all you ever heard of them—
Allurable to no sure theorem,
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Afterthoughts

We parted where the old gas-lamp still burned
Under the wayside maple and walked on,
Into the dark, as we had always done;
And I, no doubt, if he had not returned,

A Happy Man

When these graven lines you see,
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Though I be among the dead,
Let no mournful word be said.

An Old Story

Strange that I did not know him then.
That friend of mine!
I did not even show him then
One friendly sign;

Ballad Of Dead Friends

As we the withered ferns
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