Impression As A Facade
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AN IMPRESSION AS A FAÇADE
In the poem “Richard Cory” by Edwin Arlington Robinson, the tragic irony of Richard Cory’s life which was sought after with empty desire by everyone is revealed when he takes his own life and quickly becomes nothing for everyone to see. This poem leaves much to the imagination as it also leaves much room for interpretation. This poem shows that people who “have nothing compared to a rich man” actually have more than they think.
The poem opens with a speaker who exclaims,
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. (Robinson 640)
These lines describe Richard Cory’s physical appearance. Cory is a man who is noticed when he walks down the street because of the nice clothes he wears and his clean-cut look. People even in this day and age see things like this just walking down the street. We see “bums” sitting on the side of the street and we can’t help but think that the “bum” must wish that he or she were in our shoes (sometimes literally).
In the second verse of the poem, we find the lines, “And he was always quietly arrayed,/And he was always human when he talked” (Robinson 640). These lines describe Cory as a man who has everything together. He is described as a man who knows what to say at the right time. He knows what people should hear from him so that they will think even more highly of him. Unfortunately, many of us know people like this. Sometimes we can see through the façade, but most of the time the problems are so well masked that we just assume that everything is all right.
I’m not sure if money is the root of all evil, but I am sure that it does cause a whole lot of problems and headaches for people. Richard Cory’s unquestionable wealth is shown to us in line 9 which states, “And he was rich-yes, richer than a king” (Robinson 6...
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