There were a lot of phrases that Cuomo liked to repeat, and most had a melancholy cast. “You go from stone to stone across the morass” was one. “You campaign in poetry; you govern in prose” was another. Cuomo’s dark broodiness, his affinity for suffering, lent him moral gravity. His great gift—and it was an important one at the time—was to make listeners feel that politics was a serious business and that civic life matters.