Yasunari Kawabata Quotes (displaying: 1 - 30 of 33 quotes)
The woman was silent, her eyes on the floor. Shimamura had come to a point where he knew he was only parading his masculine shamelessness, and yet it seemed likely enough that the woman was familiar with the failing and need not be shocked by it. He looked at her. Perhaps it was the rich lashes of the downcast eyes that made her face seem warm and sensuous. She shook her head very slightly, and again a faint blush spread over her face.
But even more than her diary, Shimamura was surprised at her statement that she had carefully cataloged every novel and short story she had read since she was fifteen or sixteen. The record already filled ten notebooks."You write down your criticisms, do you?"I could never do anything like that. I just write down the author and the characters and how they are related to each other. That is about all."But what good does it do?"None at all."A waste of effort."A complete waste of effort," she answered brightly, as though the admission meant little to her. She gazed solemnly at Shimamura, however. A complete waste of effort. For some reason Shimamura wanted to stress the point. But, drawn to her at that moment, he felt a quiet like the voice of the rain flow over him. He knew well enough that for her it was in fact no waste of effort, but somehow the final determination that it was had the effect of distilling and purifying the woman's existence.
Is it a boy or a girl?"It's a girl. Really! Can't you tell by looking at it?"Is it mine?"It is not."Oh? Well, if it is, you needn't say so now. You can say when you feel like it. Years and years from now."It is not. It really is not. I haven't forgotten that I loved you, but you are not to imagine things.
Long accustomed to a life of self-indulgent solitude, he began to yearn for the beauty of giving himself to others. The nobility of the word 'sacrifice' became clear to him. He took satisfaction in the feeling of his own littleness as a single seed whose purpose was to carry forward from the past into the future the life of the species called humanity. He even sympathized with the thought that the human species, together with the various kinds of minerals and plants, was no more than a small pillar that helped support a single vast organism adrift in the cosmos-- and with the thought that it was no more precious than the other animals and plants.
Time passed. But time flows in many streams. Like a river, an inner stream of time will flow rapidly at some places and sluggishly at others, or perhaps even stand hopelessly stagnant. Cosmic time is the same for everyone, but human time differs with each person. Time flows in the same way for all human beings; every human being flows through time in a different way.
In the depths of the mirror the evening landscape moved by, the mirror and the reflected figures like motion pictures superimposed one on the other. The figures and the background were unrelated, and yet the figures, transparent and intangible, and the background, dim in the gathering darkness, melted into a sort of symbolic world not of this world. Particularly when a light out in the mountains shone in the centre of the girl's face, Shimamura felt his chest rise at the inexpressible beauty of it.
She could not say why these rather inconspicuous green slopes had so touched her heart, when along the railway line there were mountains, lakes, the sea at times even clouds dyed in sentimental colors. But perhaps their melancholy green, and the melancholy evening shadows of the ridges across them, had brought on the pain. Then too, they were small, well-groomed slopes with deeply shaded ridges, not nature in the wild; and the rows of rounded tea bushes looked like flocks of gentle green sheep.