yukio mishima

Translated Excerpt from Chapter 17 of The Music

However, these reflections were based on the assumption that Reiko’s letter was telling the truth: if it was just an invention, things changed dramatically. How many times before had the young woman tormented me with her lies! In any case, not being able to verify what she—and she alone—could have experienced in a room at the Kofu hospital, far from Tokyo, I had no other way to progress than to admit for the moment that she spoke the truth. Or rather: true or false Reiko had taken the trouble to write to me to announce that she had “finally heard the music,” and this fact, this psychic reality, remained indisputable.

It was a physiognomy of celestial purity that resembled that of St. Therese, her hair crowned with light, her eyes half closed, her head thrown back, her lips half open, her wings quivering… Everywhere on her features floated an indefinable expression, between pleasure and pain, and her hands clasped the frightfully emaciated, yellow and withered fingers of a dying man.

—Yukio Mishima



Translated Excerpt from Chapter 7 of The Music

At one point, while we were making love, I thought I heard the slight scratching of a sapphire on the last furrow of a record that continues to spin indefinitely once the music is over. The furrow described an endless trajectory, a sizzle that did not stop, and when my ear captured it, I had the impression that it was the only sound to continue into eternity. That meant that the music of this record had stopped in a past so long ago that my memory could not go back to that point. It had been a long time since the music was dead.

–Yukio Mishima

Protected: [The Music] by Yukio Mishima – Ch.14 (An English Translation) (2,082 wrds.)

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