Michio is hibernating. He is snowed in. County Road 9 has been obliterated. Michio is hibernating without his wife. She is hibernating elsewhere. Sūzan has been gone for two years. This is his third winter of hibernating without her. He doesn’t know where she is because she is dead. He fears she is cold, colder than he is in his lowly bungalow; and alone, lonelier than he is in his isolation; and in a black void — at least he can turn on a light.
They have lost contact. This is a shame. His calls out her name. He prays in his own clumsy way. He entreats the invisible silent God but to no avail. He would give his left eye — no, wait, he already gave that in war — he would give his left arm to have her back, if not in body then in spirit, to hear her voice, if not to communicate, then to commune, to at least feel her presence. Two years. Even he is surprised by the relentlessness of the grief.
His name, Michio, means ‘man with strength of three thousand’ but these days and nights he feels like a dragonfly trapped in a web.