Two blind men pursue ephemeral and unlikely hopes. One is an aged master, a wandering troubador venerated as a saint, in physical decline, waiting to break his 1,000th banjo string, an event his own master promised years before would bring him sight. The other is his apprentice, Shidou, who longs for a woman's love and is enchanted with the radiant and spirited Lanxiu. The two men are encamped outside Lanxiu's village, the saint using his energy and voice to bring peace between warring factions. Does sight await the saint when the 1000th string breaks? Can Shidou's strength of character overcome provincial prejudice to win the hand of Lanxiu and a place in the village?