The First Paragraph: After the Banquet

The Setsugoan—the After-the-Snow Retreat—stood on high ground in a hilly part of the Koishikawa district of Tokyo. It had fortunately escaped unharmed during the war; nothing had been damaged either in the magnificent garden, a noted example of Kobori Enshu style covering over a hundred thousand square feet, or in the buildings: a central gate moved here from a certain famous temple in Kyoto, an entrance and visitors’ pavilion lifted bodily from some ancient temple of Nara, and a banqueting hall of more recent construction.

—from After the Banquet (1960) by Yukio Mishima

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