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Friday, May 8, 2009

Richard Cory/Simon & Garfunkel

This song from Simon & Garfunkel's 1966 album Sounds of Silence is based on the poem of the same name by Edwin Arlington Robinson. Both offer a portrait of the wealthy and glamorous title figure as seen through the eyes of a struggling worker (Paul Simon's lyrics have the narrator laboring in a factory owned by Richard Cory). Both convey the worker's mix of envy and admiration as he describes Cory's easy grace and comfortable lifestyle. And both share Robinson's wasp-sting final revelation, as we learn that Richard Cory went home one night "and put a bullet in his head."

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