“The Music” by Yukio Mishima – Chapter 10 [An English Translation]


As I progressed in reading this fabricated diary, I’ll admit it, I more or less lost my temper—which is a shame for a psychoanalyst.

Distant and impoverished fantasies worthy of compassion, a patient suffering from neurosis, a dark evil, a strange force, these tropes animated those pages. But what was the reason that Reiko would exhibit such treachery towards me? Moreover, given the content and the style of this stolen diary, I was now sure that the young woman had deliberately written it in the hope that it would be stolen by her boyfriend.

The passage that followed was even more vile; I became the epitome of the evil doctor, erotomanic and ridiculous, as it often appears in the movies.

As I continued reading the diary I felt the scorching heat from eyes full of hatred and anger, the eyes of Ryuichi Egami. So I was forced to stand constantly on guard in anticipation of any violence that the boy risked to provoke. In such circumstances, the sane are always more formidable than fools.

While keeping one eye on the pages of the diary, I thought about how to behave in this difficult time. To cool the excitement of the young man, I knew I had to remain immersed as long as possible in my reading. I flipped several times through the first pages on the lookout for logical faults that would return this young man to reason, but without discovering the least, unfortunately, because Reiko’s nauseating speech flawlessly consistent. However, I tilted my face just a bit from the diary and saw that he had already recovered his serenity.

“But first, if you may sit?” I said to Ryûichi who remained standing, still staring at me with a black expression. “I’ll explain things calmly.”

“—There is no question that I follow you in loopholes,” he replied, though I felt relieved to see that as he said this he sat down in front of me.” “First,” he continued, “I have not come here to ask for justifications or to quarrel with you: this, I say to you very clearly and right now because I would be mindful of being caught for a blackmailer or a pimp. All I ask you is not to touch Reiko.”

“—Yes, I understand,” I said with deliberate softness, but the idea that too much kindness might make me look like the satyr Reiko had portrayed me in her diary made me feel a little nauseated. “I find myself cornered, it is a fact, a position that is very difficult to defend, but what seems to me a pity is that your judgment is based on a one-sided testimony. My medical reports are typically locked away according to the principle of strict confidentiality, but I would like you to read Reiko’s file, to get an idea of what has been happening here. You are free to decide which you prefer to believe, but you will at least, I think, recognize that, objectively, that Reiko’s diary and my medical records have equal documentary value. That being so, it will be for you to judge.” And pressing the intercom button, I said to my assistant, “Say, Kodama, bring me dossier N85 from file cabinet number 3.”

In the few minutes before the arrival of the dossier, I felt that the worst was over. Ryuichi, unable to look me in the face, tried to keep his eyes turned toward the window.

When Kodama brought the file, I wordlessly it handed off to the young man. My assistant, who had never seen me act so, was stupefied.

Ryuichi was completely absorbed in his reading. It was a very natural thing for him, I guess. He probably read Reiko’s mail far more avidly than my notes. Thanks to the contents of Reiko’s letters, the young man seemed to finally realize the thoughtlessness of his judgment. After all, the letters in question were not those of a woman who wrote that from the first consultation her therapist was an erotomaniac and as they obviously contradicted the details in the stolen diary, Ryuichi was taken aback.