“One day, Yohyō, a poor but kind farmer, helps a crane struggling who with getting out of a trap. Later, a woman names Tsu comes to visits Yohyō and tells him that she wants to marry him, and so they become a husband and a wife. Tsū weaves beautiful textiles. Yohyō makes some money by selling it, but Tsū never allows him to look into the room when she is weaving. Sōdo and Unzu, money-hungry people, tempt Yohyō to ask Tsū to make more textiles. When Tsu complies, they and Yohyō finally break Yohyō’s promise and look into the secret room. It turns out that Tsū is a crane and she has been weaving the textiles by using her own feathers. When Tsū realizes Yohyō broke his promise, she changes herself back into a crane and flies away. ”
-Wikipedia: Junji Kinoshita.
‘Twilight of a Crane’ is a piece that examines the theme of love in an
eccentric manner, and the unconventionality comes from the character play of
the show. Romantic love, is ususally associated with two human hearts, but in
this case, Tsu is a crane that takes the form of a human female, who falls in
love with Yohyo. The characters themselves are quite interesting, and the text
provides us with images of flawed individuals, leaving little to imagination. Particularly
the characters of Tsu and Yohyo, when subjected to scrutiny, reveal some
similarities and differences.
beautiful and pure, and is capable of showing great love, and understands the
value of love, and struggles to stick to that image of a perfect relationship.
really happy wrapped up in your love and singing and playing with the children”
grateful to Yohyo for saving her life, and thus lives for him, and worships
him. They live well together, and Yohyo loves Tsu with all his being. She is a
creature with simple needs who abides by the laws of nature, and is thrilled by
the little things in life. She is intelligent, as she learns the human way of
life, and adjusts to her role of being Yohyo’s wife, really well. But she does
not understand the language of materialism that is a significant part of human
life and considers it an unwanted thing that corrupts and manipulates purity.
trying to convert you into their way of thinking”
She recognizes the evil in Sodo and Unzu right
away and begs Yohyo to stay away from them. She is principled, and leaves Yohyo,
as the wickedness in Sodo and Unzu begin to creep into him as well.
is capable of extraordinary love, and kindness, as he saves Tsu, then a crane
who was struck by the ignoble hands of merciless humans. He too is pleased by
the small wonders of life, the little happy moments that are offered by fate.
But as opposed to Tsu, he is a trifle ignorant and a little dense. He is easy
to manipulate as was proven by Sodo and Unzu.
“I’ll go to
Kyoto just to make a lot of profit”
He was pure
at heart and simple minded before capitalistic Sodo and Unzu distorted him. Tsu
always told him to stay away from them, but he defied her word every time until
he was consumed by materialism, and it brought him grave consequences.
“I can no
longer take the shape of a woman, I have to go back again to the old sky by
He could not see through Sodo’s and Unzu’s
deceit and continued to trust them instead of his wife, and that led to their
Tsu, moved in sync with each other as, for a time, their hearts beat to the
same rhythm. But Yohyo’s gullible mind and Tsu’s intelligence was the thing
that set them apart and that difference led to the end of their relationship. Tsu’s
bond with minimalism and Yohyo’s urge for more made them stand on two ends of a
wide chasm that had no bridge to span the distance.