Richard Cory

(1940)

The poem "Richard Cory" comes from Robinson's 1897 volume The Children of the Night. John Duke also set this text.

Richard Cory
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 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.


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