phonetic imagination: "(C.G.) Jung's early research indicated...that under normal conditions a person associates words according to a consideration of the meaning-concept. However, the more unconscious a person becomes, the greater the tendency to associate words phonetically. And it is this shift in the linguistic mode that opens the personality to its interior archetypal 'thesaurus,' a psychic dictionary which imaginally binds together the incongruous medley of meanings attached to similar phonetic patterns. P.K. Kugler, The Phonetic Imagination. Spring 1979. p.123.

Medusa: The granddaughter of Gaia, the Earth Mother, Medusa was one of  three Gorgon sisters.

Poseidon: God of the Seas, he also took the form of a horse. At the time of her death, Medusa is pregnant, and when Perseus takes her head, Pegasus, the winged horse, inspiration of poets, springs forth, along with the hero Chrysaor.   

Athene: Like Medusa, Athene came from Libya. She was born from the head of Zeus, a "brain-child. A warrior-goddess, Athene is portrayed wearing armor. She had flashing eyes, was unsleeping, and her bird was the owl.

Gorgon: The Gorgons were three sisters. Instead of hair, they have live snakes; their necks are covered with scales; they had tusks like a boar's, golden hands and bronze wings. Medusa  was the only one who was not mortal, although after her head was severed  it still retained its powers. The other Gorgons were  Euryale ("far-roaming") and Sthenno ("forceful").


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Medusa's tongue: (right) J. Weishaus, "Come Here and Leave Me Alone." Stoneware, Mixed Media. 1992.

her posture: "Still another motif is the human figure in a broad squat, frequently with its tongue out flat and down over the chin--a form we recognize immediately as one of the postures of  the Greek Medusa, the Gorgon whose head Perseus took in Africa just before his rescue of the maid Andromeda from the serpent." J. Campbell, The Masks of God: Primitive Mythology. New York, 1976. p.211. 

marrow: Medulla oblongata: "oblong middle," or "marrow."

briefly: For example, Perseus set out for Africa to find Medusa, but didn't know where her cave was. For find this information, he tricked the Three Gray Women, the Graeae, into giving him the information by grabbing the one eye they shared between them.

"The light being so faint, he could not well make out what sort of figures (the Three Gray Women) were; only he discovered that they had long gray hair; and, as they came nearer, he saw that two of them had but the empty socket of an eye, in the middle of their foreheads. But, in the middle of the third sister's forehead, there was a very large, bright, and piercing eye, which sparkled like a great diamond in a ring; and so penetrating did it seem to be, that Perseus could not help thinking it must possess the gift of seeing in the darkest midnight just as perfectly as at noonday." N. Hawthorne, "The Gorgon's Head." In, A Wonder-Book, Tanglewood Tales and Grandfather's Chair. Boston, MA., 1883. p.32.

Perseus: Son of Zeus and Danae. His grandfather, Acrisius, was told by the oracle at Delphi that his daughter's child would be the instrument of his death, so he shut mother and child adrift in a chest. They landed at Seriphus, where a fisherman found them and gave them shelter. Years later, King Polydectes saw and fell for Danae. In order to get Perseus out of the way, he pretended that he wanted to marry another woman, and set Perseus on a quest from which he thought the boy would never return.

severed head: "(Robert) McKinley, surveying the ritual beliefs associated with Borneo headhunting, noted that war raids were associated with cosmic journeys. The heads became a companion on these journeys, and was treated with great friendliness once it arrived in the village: it was fed with meat and rice wine, fires were lit for it on cold nights, and women even coddled it and nursed it like a baby. McKinley interprets this as the 'ritual incorporation of the enemy as friend.' " J. Hoskins, Headhunting and the Social Imagination in Southeast Asia. Stanford, 1996. p.14.