3Stanza One Dramatic Monologue The suspicion appears to be about an unfaithful lover – Duffy has recreated the myth by giving psychological reasons for her physical changeBased on the Greek MythA suspicion, a doubt, a jealousygrew in my mind,which turned the hairs on my head to filthy snakesas though my thoughtshissed and spat on my scalp.This poem could be read from the perspective of any scorned woman = extended metaphorOnomatopoeia and alliterationMedusa was a priestess for Athena who was seduced by Poseidon. Athena was so angry that she turned her into a Gorgon so that if she looked at a man she would turn them to stone.
4Stanza Two Sibilance My bride’s breath soured, stank in the grey bags of my lungs.I’m foul mouthed now, foul tongued,yellow fanged.There are bullet tears in my eyes.Are you terrified?Plosive alliteration
5Stanza Three imperative Be terrified. It’s you I love, perfect man, Greek God, my own;but I know you’ll go, betray me, strayfrom home.So better by for me if you were stone.She wants him to be stone so he physically can’t leave – possessive loveShe loves him, yet is terrified he will leave her
6Stanza Four I glanced at a buzzing bee, a dull grey pebble fell to the ground.I glanced at a singing bird,a handful of dusty gravelspattered downThe speaker is demonstrating her powers
7Stanza FiveWhy do you think she uses the swear word ‘shit’ instead of the more polite ‘poo’?I looked at a ginger cat,a housebrickshattered a bowl of milk.I looked at a snuffling pig,a boulder rolledin a heap of shit.The speaker is demonstrating her powers
8Stanza Six The speaker’s power has grown I stared in the mirror. Love gone badshowed me a Gorgon.I stared at a dragon.Fire spewedfrom the mouth of a mountain.In the last three stanzas the verbs have become stronger – glanced – looked – stared, why do you think this is?In the last three stanzas, note the half-rhyme – what does it suggest?
9Stanza Seven And here you come with a shield for a heartand a sword for a tongueand your girls, your girls.Wasn’t I beautifulWasn’t I fragrant and young?This stanza addresses Perseus directly (from the myth). He is prepared to fight her and is protectedIn the last two lines of this stanza, Medusa’s sadness seems to be the same as most women’s – fading beauty and looks
10Stanza Eight Simple and direct language is used throughout the poem Look at me now.This is ambiguous – if we do look at her we’ll be turned to stone however, we are almost tricked into looking at her through sympathy
11In the poem Myth and modern age are mixed The poem has a timeless quality – beauty is still a concern nowadaysHer suspicions and jealousy have turned her physically uglyHer ability to love has destroyed her through the male’s betrayalThe poem shows psychological depth, the inability to love through fear of abandonment