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Ward 10B, Stobhill Hospital

Ward 10B is a Yellow ward. It is full of yellow people. If they are not yellow when they are put in there, they turn yellow. Most of them come in with jaundice caused by cirrhosis of the liver.

Ward 10A is closed.

Ward 10C is a Green Ward.

Stobhill Hospital is Stubhill Hospital, because it sits on a stubby windswept hill on the corner of the town. Nobody goes there who doesn't have to.

Once a week the psychiatrist comes round to fill up his clipboard. Then he goes away again for another week.

The nurses come in to change the yellow bedspreads. I brought in my own bedspread. It was purple, fit for a king. I wanted to be different. I wanted some respect, some dignity. But I was told I didn't fit in. I had to take it off. If it had been green, I was told, by the Ward Manager, it might have been alright, but purple, no.

Some of the patients had a party. They put the yellow bedspreads around them and started dancing to Jumping Jack Flash by the Stones. It wasn't allowed, they were told. Why not? Someone asked. Because it would upset the other patients. But there were no other patients. All of them were dancing. It doesn't matter. Don't do it anyway.

Just for a moment, the ward changed colour. It changed to red then blue then pink, while they were dancing. Even the patients faces became redder. When they were told to stop, one of them got angry and his face turned purple. That was forbidden as well. He would be put on the Green Ward if he didn't behave.

They all sat down again. The rebellion was over. The ward turned back to yellow. Then night fell and it turned grey then black until morning as the lights went out.  

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