She sat at her desk and graded. But she brooded over that conversation with her dad. Prayers were said before bed every night and songs of faith sung as they fed cattle or horses or she road along with him in the tractor working the field, and they’d driven the thirty miles to town when they could to attend church. Marlee’s faith in God had always been there, a part of her that kept her strong and brought her joy. But that was before they’d had to rent out their ground, sell most of the cattle, and before she’d had to watch as her dad fought the cancer.
Her guitar sat in a layer of dust and the black stand had a greyish color to it. “Won’t you sing for me?” he’d say. But she’d tell him that the strings were worn and needed to be replaced and she just hadn’t had time to get to it. When the cancer had come back after all that prayer and pleading with God, Marlee felt that rock solid faith pulverized and broken into tiny bits. The fierce prairie winds had carried it off and now it was fodder for badgers digging holes in the ditches.