by Carol Ann Duffy
Anne Hathaway Truth Quotes
How we cite our quotes: (line)
'Item I gyve unto my wife my second best bed ...'
(from Shakespeare's will) (epigraph)
The poem begins with the facts. In his will, Shakespeare left his wife his second best bed. Most people interpret this to mean that Shakespeare didn't really love his wife, but Duffy will go on to share a different point of view.
The bed we loved in was a spinning world
of forests, castles, torchlight, clifftops, seas
where we would dive for pearls. […] (1-3)
Right from the beginning of the poem, Duffy presents us with the idea that there really was a lot of love between Anne Hathaway and Shakespeare. The second best bed is not some broken-down piece of furniture; it's "the bed [they] loved in."