In her poem anthology, The World's Wife, Carol Ann Duffy introduces a female perspective to the stories of many famous men in history and literature, such as King Herod and Midas. In some of these poems she entertains the possibility that it was the women beside these well-known men who were the inspiration to their greatness, like in the poem Anne Hathaway (Shakespeare's wife). Duffy's poems have been regarded as feminist and even 'anti-men', however Duffy has said herself that she "wasn't trying to attack the male, but put the female into it, into the story".
In these poems Duffy examines love and relationships, as well as how deeply loss and disappointment can affect someone. With the use of language features, Duffy evokes emotions from readers such as dislike, sympathy, and sadness, felt towards the characters, particularly in poems Mrs Midas and Medusa.
In Mrs Midas, Duffy retells the story of Midas in a modern setting, through the perspective of Midas' wife. This poem illustrates how one's choices and actions can impact upon another. When Midas had his wish, of everything he touches turning into gold, granted he felt powerful and delighted, "like a king on a burnished throne". This didn't last long, for the couple realised that his new ability meant they were unable to touch and/or be intimate with one another, which completely changed their relationship as they were always "passionate" and cultivated their love by showing affection.
Duffy uses language features to evoke sympathy and sadness from readers felt for Mrs Midas and her loss of a lover, and their hopes for the future together. While Mrs Midas is feeling terrorised and trying to separate herself from her husband, Midas is "turning the spare room into the tomb of Tutankhamun". This metaphor visually powerful, for it creates an image of Midas and his piles of useless metal.