The ex-retainer, Saemon, and his wife, Mayumi, have fallen on hard times and their poverty is
causing both incredible stress. Mayumi has the bad habit of letting her emotions get the better of her,
making her say and do things which she later regrets. One day, this is exactly what happens.
Coming home and finding her husband in a terrible mood, she rashly declares that they must separate,
even though her original intention was quite the opposite. Saemon is too ashamed of his inability to
provide for her to object. Five years pass, and Mayumi has become the wife of a provincial lord but,
though she lives in comfort and splendour, she has no love for her new husband and thinks constantly
of Saemon. One day she meets a poor man selling reeds along the waterfront and recognizes him as Saemon.
When he runs away, she pursues him to his hut where she breaks down and confesses her past mistake. Yet,
he goes off again, realizing that nothing can now be done to change things. Mayumi finally leaves a
farewell poem behind written on her outer kimono and then rides off into the sunset.
Courtesy of Paul M. Griffith