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Richard Cory - Edwin Arlington Robinson

The poem focuses on a rich and well admired youngman who comitts suicide.The person is confused as to why such a young man would take his own life. Judging from the tone of the poem,we can say the story is told by one of the townspeople. At the opening of the poem, we find a lofty description of a perfect gentle man whose appearance never ceases to attract attention.

Whenever Richard Cory went down town,
We people on the pavement looked at him:
He was a gentle man 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. 

The first thing that comes to mind here  is that Richard  is a well admired young man, a kind of man everybody wishes to be like and, if you like, envy. From these few lines, one is introduced to the theme of social stratification. Obviously, Richard Cory is from the upper class - an Aristocrat - That is why the “people on the pavement” always look at him in admiration.We get the idea tha Richard is a ''clean favoured'' good looking man and that his attire is fully formal.He has this special quality that makes him stand out in the crowd. 

Richard was also a rich man,
…he was rich—yes, richer than a king—
And admirably schooled in every grace:
In fine, we thought he was everything
                        To make us wish that we were in his place.
The picture we get here is that of a super human. Richard Cory is everyone’s ideal. Both the young and the old wish to be like him. To them, he’s everything a man should be. He is gentlemanly, speaks fluently, well educated, and most of all, he is super rich—richer than a king! But then:
“…Richard Cory, one summer night 
Went home and put a bullet through his head”.
 That is the end of the much admired Cory. In the eyes of everyone, he lives a perfect life, but secretly, he goes through night mares.

Edwin Arlington uses irony,simplicity and perfect rhyme to depict the theme of the poem,The theme of the poem is that ''appearance can be deceptive''. What appears good may not really be good.

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