The Pier part 4

The noon-gun of the city of Yokohama resounds. With this as a signal, the ship, from the hold of which for some time a noise has been issuing, silently begins to move.

The elderly Europeans, who seem to be a married couple, are standing at the bulwark. They are talking about something of a jolly nature with a white-haired old man who is standing on the pier, with one of his feet placed on an apparatus to roll the ropes, which looks like a big bobbin. They do not seem to regret the parting.

It looks, as if the ship is moving. It looks as if the pier is moving. There seems to be the distance of a Pallaraxe between the place where her husband and the viscount are standing and the place where she is standing. She feels her eyes growing larger and larger.

Some of the people who are looking after them are running to the end of the pier. She cannot do such an immodest thing. Suddenly something white waves at the bulwark.

It was a handkerchief waved

The Pier part 3

Peeping into the room she finds two beds, under which the familiar packages and trunks are deposited. Her husband is standing before one of the beds.

“Look it through, madam. It is like this.”

This is the room; she must look through it carefully. During the long, long voyage of her husband, this is the room where her dreams must come and go.

A man, who looks like the captain, comes, and, addressing her husband in French, guides him to the saloon of the ship. She follows her husband and the viscount and enters the romp.

This is a spacious and beautiful saloon. Several tables are arranged, each bearing a flower basket. … Gradually the people who came to say farewell gather into the room.

By the order of this man, who looks like the captain, a waiter brings forth many cups in the shape of morning-glories, and, pouring champagne into them, he distributes them among the people. Another waiter brings cakes, like those which are b

The Pier part 2

While walking slowly, she sees her husband and the viscount, his companion, crossing the gangplank and entering the ship.

The group of people looking after them are standing, here and there, on the pier. Almost all of them are those who came to bid adieu to her husband and the viscount. Perhaps there are no other passengers on this ship about to sail who are so important and are looked at by so many people.

Some of them are going to the foot of the stool on which the gangplank is laid, and stop there to wait for their companions. Some of them are standing at the place, a bit before the stool, where the blocks and ropes are laid down.

Among these people there must be some who are intimately known to her husband, and some who know him but slightly. But, standing under this clear sky, they all seem dejected; or is it only her fancy?

Following slowly after them, unconsciously she looks off to her right where there were many round windows on the si

The Pier part 1

Mori Ogwai (1860—1932)

Mori Ogwai, who was at one time army surgeon general, was one of the most distinguished Japanese literary men. He has been indefatigable in his labors of translation and interpretation.

His versions of the great works of European writers are considered among the finest in all modern Japanese literature. He also wrote important biographies, novels, and many excellent short stories.

This story, translated by Torao Taketomo, is reprinted from the volume Paulownia, copyright, 1918, by Duffield & Co., New York, by permission of the publisher.

The Pier

The rails of four railroads cut straight and obliquely the beams of the iron bridge on which the long and short cross-beams are like the bars of a mylophone on which children play. Through the cracks of the cross-beams, that almost catch the heels of shoes and wooden clogs, here and there the black waves are shown, reflected on the white flashes of sunshine.