The white noise and gossip merge together. Minor slights and affronts, sterilized, ionized, sanctified in the static. Low private giggles echo off reports and the foreboding specimen bottles, amber, white, slime green, toxic with pessimism. Inside, questions echo dull and short and clip boarded. Interviews of organs, symptoms, brushoffs...detective work. In the walls, the files silently wilt. Diagnoses, observations, histories of phantom aches and unexpected chemistries. Acute, benign, and the other. My mother ran this place, walked this carpet under my feet for 8 years, smiling, white noised and helpful, surrounded by evidence of disease. A world reduced to a cube, a life reduced to checkbox percentages. Grateful, cured patients brought small gifts, a silk, a sweet, a dried flower — offerings of relief to the administrative altar. Today, there's no trace of her here, only files bearing her invisible, caring fingerprints.