"...in his portrait of an elderly Tokyo businessman, Yasunari Kawabata charts the gradual, reluctant narrowing of a human life, along with the sudden upsurges of passion that illumunate its closing. By day, Ogata Shingo is troubled by small failures of memory. At night he hears a distant rumble from the nearby mountain, a sound he associates with death. In between are the relationships that were once the foundations of Shingo's life: with his disappointing wife, his philandering son, and his daughter-in-law Kikuko, who instills in him both pity and uneasy stirrings of sexual desire."--From publisher description.