I was still not quite clear in my head. My forgetfulness became acute. But my mood was calm as it had not been in recent years. I had a nice quiet feeling. It was the beginning of the rice harvest, and the weather also was fine.

I was all alone. There was no one to talk to. I spent the day reading and writing, or sat in a chair outside my room vaguely looking at the mountains or the road, or else took walks. A good place for walking was the road that went up from the town by slow degrees alongside a small stream.

There was a little pool at a bend in the steam around the foot of the mountain where trout congregated. If you looked more closely, you might discover big freshwater crabs with hairs on their claws sitting as still as stones. I often walked on this road before supper.

As I went up along the small, clear stream through the lonely autumn ravine in the chilly evening, my thoughts were often of unhappy things. They were lonely thoughts. But in them was this nice, quiet feeling.

At Kinosaki
Shiga Naoya
translated by Lane Dunlop