How does Duffy create a distinctive speaker in Mrs Midas?
In the poem ‘Mrs Midas’ Duffy presents us with a fairly distinctive personality that is a result of a wish made by her husband that turns to be the cause of his death.
Duffy uses first person in order to give the reader a descriptive overview of the speaker and how she deals with the situation. In the first stanza we are introduced to a typical cosy ‘relaxed’ home, the kind of image that you see in every house. She is admiring the garden as she sees him ‘snapping a twig’ further illustrating the cosy image of the house. However, this image is immediately changed by her sudden shock of the ‘lightbulb’ sitting on ‘his palm’ switched ‘on’ Her realisation of what is happening is further shown by ‘the doorknobs gleam[ing]’ and how he is ‘sitting in that chair like a king on burnished throne’. She describes her husband as ‘strange, wild, vain’ as if he is a completely different person. The use of assonance in stanza four gives the speaker’s words more flexibility, making the sentence sound realistic. Her ‘shaking hand’ and the fact that she stood there ‘watch[ing]’in horror as the glass turned into a ‘goblet, golden chalice’.
On the other hand, the fact that she ‘calmed down’ and made her husband ‘sit’ to explain makes us see this distinctive and understanding character. Although she knows her husband’s life is going to end for this ‘wish’ that he had. ‘Look we all have wishes’ shows her understanding towards the situation even though at the end of the stanza she says ‘you’ll be able to give up smoking for good’ which shows that she’s aware of the difficult situation. Duffy particularly shows this distinctive personality by making fun of the situation throughout the poem; referring to gold in most of her sentences. This is shown as she describes wishes as ‘granted’ and the stem of the cigarette as ‘luteous’ which is a yellow colour tinged with green or brown. The poem finished with her husband as ‘thin,...