1921 (Taisho 10) Tuesday, November 8 Kawabata Yasunari (22) received a letter from his fiancee Ito Imai (15) stating that he had unilaterally broken his engagement. The couple got engaged the previous month at Shoushukan on the banks of the Nagara River River in Gifu-shi.
Yasunari Kawabata was 11 years older than him, and the author Kan Kikuchi (23) had promised that the newlyweds would be able to use Kikuchi’s house while he was away on a trip abroad. He was also supposed to receive 50 yen a month in living expenses from Kikuchi, who was already a popular writer and published “Madame Pearl” in the Tokyo Nichinichi Newspaper. Kawabata had already rented an eight-mat room on the second floor of a house of a man named Tsunematsu Tozawa in Nezu, Hongo Ward, for his new house with the first generation, and was gradually buying up all the household goods. You must have been looking forward to your new wife, the first generation, arriving in Tokyo every day.
On this day, Yasunari Kawabata visited Kan Kikuchi’s house in Koishikawa Nakatomizaka, where he first met Toshikazu Yokomitsu, who was a year younger than him. Kikuchi, Kawabata, and Yokomitsu went to eat beef hot pot at the beef restaurant “Echikatsu” in Hongo. Of course, the payment is Kikuchi. Yokomitsu went home first, but Kikuchi says that he took a charm from the gamaguchi and gave it to Kawabata to pay for moving to his new house.
Kawabata was very happy and thanked Kikuchi because it was the time for shopping before marriage. Then I bought 5 zabuton for my new house and stopped by Tokimatsu Tozawa in Nezu Nishisukacho where I am moving tomorrow. And when Kawabata returned to his boarding house in Asakusa Kojimacho, he received a letter from the first generation in Gifu saying that they had broken their engagement.
The content of the “extraordinary event” that caused the annulment of the engagement will be revealed later. It referred to the sexual assault of the founder by Aoki Gakuon (48), the chief priest of a temple called Saihoji in Kano, Gifu City, where the founder was entrusted. Kawabata hopped on the night train for Gifu. The next day I meet the first generation, who says he was completely worn out.
Once there was a sign that the engagement was about to be restored, Kawabata gave 20 letters of writing paper to the first generation through his friend Sammyo Eimu, but when Kawabata returned to Tokyo and started to prepare for marriage again, he received the last letter from the first generation, saying goodbye forever.