The Tragic Deaths of Kate Spade, Anthony Bourdain and Richard Cory

This past week marked the tragic suicides of fashion superstar Kate Spade and the celebrity chef and TV star Anthony Bourdain.  Reading about the self-inflicted deaths of these two people who one would have thought had achieved all that they had ever dreamed of, I was reminded of the poem I last read in high school, Edwin Arlington Robinson’s Richard Cory.  The poem reminds us in stark fashion how wealth, success or personal charm can never protect the soul from inexplicable depression.


As someone who writes about murder for the pleasure of readers the reality it reminds us of seems particularly apt.  For those who’ve never read Richard Cory or don’t remember it, here it is.  As they say, read it and weep.


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.

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