Mycology 101

From: Alice Said

“Mycology 101”

Mycology is the mold
that never leaves your shower tile,
the green hair on forgotten food,
the growth in love with Grandpa’s toes.
It is the yeast that makes dough rise,
intoxicates juice,
and masterminds much-feared infections.
Mycology is laboratory work behind vaccines,
locker-room ailments sidelining athletes,
the truffles sought by 4-star chefs,
and buttons sliced on pizza pies.
Its presence homeowners fear,
and real estate agents overlook.
Some can offer magical visions,
while others bring sickness, death.
Mycology breeds on damp drywall,
rocks and rotting corpses; it’s found
on the forest floor, the produce isle, skin –
always migrating, manipulating, multiplying.
Lighter than dust, it rides the wind;
once grounded, it thrives without sympathy.
Mycology is covert, cryptic, resilient –
often overlooked, avoided, ignored.
But if you choose to welcome
the obscure,
if you can be both patient
and prying,
then you, too, can see
the magical, enigmatic art
that surrounds us.

Credit: First appeared in The Kerf 2018: 41.