Paul Simon's song is both a paraphrase and an amplification of E.A. Robinson's poem. Both the speaker and Cory are more fleshed out, and their stories are told in more detail, by Simon. For instance, in the opening of the song, Simon sings,
They say that Richard Cory owns one half of this old town,
With political connections to spread his wealth around.
Born into society, a banker's only child,
He had everything a man could want: power, grace and style.
Robinson's poem has not given us this much background about Cory. As a description of Cory, besides his elegant look on the street, we are only told that
And he was rich—yes, richer than a king—
And admirably schooled in every grace.
Simon, having already expanded on the facts about Cory's wealth, gives us a further description:
The papers print his picture almost everywhere he goes,
Richard Cory at the opera, Richard Cory at a show,
And the rumor of his parties and the orgies on his yacht!
Oh! He surely must be happy, with everything he's got.
(The entire section contains 2 answers and 655 words.)