(This poem, published previously, on The Labyrinth of Chemical Sensitivities, was recently workshopped in my Poetry 1 class at Victoria University, St Albans Campus, Victoria, Australia, under the bright shining poetry light of one teacher, Tracey Rolfe (you can visit her awesome blog here). This here is the latest version. Please feel free to leave your thoughts or comments in the comments box below.)
Ubiquitous in nature,
moulds: Cladosporium spores
windswept, transported on the overcast
days you can’t tolerate, microbes of irritation
the sun and sharp vaporous fumes, cause and effect
sinuses aching into eye sockets, lungs wheezing out oxygen
symptomatic of your exposure to the fungi Aspergillus fumigatus
the volatile organic compounded malodour from spores
expanding, hyphae curling out and up like branches
in the night, fruiting green-grey monsters
seeking out moist darkness; its colony
a mushrooming city of allergens
released: the curse of
 Cladosporium spores: wind-dispersed moulds found in abundance outdoors; in large amounts, these allergens, can affect asthmatics and people with allergies and/or chemical sensitivities.
 Aspergillus fumigatus: mould commonly found in the break-down of organic matter such as soil, and compost; however, it can also be found in moisture-damaged buildings where it can grow on chipboard, wood and gypsum board (plaster), thus releasing cytoxins, which not only affect the indoor air quality but also the health of the occupants. Inhabitant’s symptoms can include: rhinitis, irritation to eyes and skin, fatigue and/or respiratory infections.
 Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs): organic chemicals released into the air from synthetic and natural occurring compounds. When VOCs are released from mould, these can contribute to sick-building syndrome.
© Michellina Van Loder, 2012
(Note: After living the last year of my life in a mould affected environment, the tole on my health has pushed me deeper into the Labyrinth of Chemical Sensitivities, shitty at the best of times, agonisingly surreal at the worst of times. The following YouTube clip shows a different perspective on mould; a perspective of beauty and appreciation for something so horrid… As you’ll see, there is some beautiful imagery there–fodder for this here poet!)
The Labyrinth: Pullularia Mould