When the three men leave for the barn, the women discover more clues. Mrs. Peters sees erratic stitches, so different from the even sewing of the other pieces. Martha immediately pulls out the uneven stitches, despite Mrs. Peters’s warning about touching anything. They recall how Mrs. Wright once sang so beautifully, and they think she no doubt had a canary because they see a birdcage. While looking for Minnie’s sewing things to bring to her in jail, they find her canary wrapped up in a piece of silk with its neck wrung. Just as they figure out that John must have violently ripped off the birdcage door hinge and silenced the chirping canary by wringing its neck, the men return. Without plotting any collaboration, the women instinctively conceal the dead bird in the sewing basket and make excuses to divert the men’s attention. When she is again alone with Mrs. Peters, Martha describes her rage when a boy once took a hatchet to her kitten when she was a girl. Then Mrs. Peters admits her loneliness while homesteading in remote Dakota after her baby died. How the men would laugh to hear their talk about such trivia as a dead canary, she says.
Many accept that prayer can aid in recovery due to psychological and physical benefits. It has also been suggested that if a person knows that he or she is being prayed for it can be uplifting and increase morale, thus aiding recovery. (See Subject-expectancy effect). Many studies have suggested that prayer can reduce physical stress, regardless of the god or gods a person prays to, and this may be true for many reasons. According to a study by Centra State Hospital, “the psychological benefits of prayer may help reduce stress and anxiety, promote a more positive outlook, and strengthen the will to live.
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