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Voices of the Heroic Spirits

mishimalastday382 words

Now not all the waves
of the four seas are calm,
but in the land of Yamato,
where the sun rises,
the winds are sated, men devote themselves to pleasure.
Under the virtuous rule of His Majesty
peace reigns everywhere.
People exchange lazy and calm smiles,
business deals are done,
pacts are made with enemies;
people run, pushed on by foreign lucre.
Those who no longer want to fight
indulge in cowardly acts:
War, having become a nuisance,
now thrives in the shadows.
The trust between spouses, among friends, has vanished
deceitful democracy has its day,
the world is infested
with duplicitous, easygoing harmony.
Forces are diverted, bodies are held in contempt,
the young are strangled
by inertia, drugs, ambition,
and like sheep they advance in herds
towards mediocre desires
devoid of hope.
Pleasures, too, have lost
their flavour,
and loyalty its strength.
All souls are rotted from within,
and, preached as virtue by old men,
everywhere reigns a cowardly will
to self-assertion
and a contemptible security.
Truth is denied,
real emotions grow lifeless
hope no longer lightens
the steps of those who walk,
the laughter of imbeciles echoes everywhere,
every forehead bears the mark
of the death of the spirit.
Joy and pain fade quickly,
purity is for sale,
even lust is worn out:
people think only of money,
its value is greater than that
of human beings.
Even those who revolt
are looking in their own cunning way
for a tranquil abode,
the faces of those who are at the summit of fame,
complacent,
swell obscenely.
A decadent beauty
infests the world,
only base truths are believed,
the number of cars increases
and inane speed shatters souls.
Enormous buildings are built,
but great causes collapse,
windows are lit by the neon lights
of unsatisfied desires,
morning after morning
the sun rises dim with smog,
feelings are dulled,
sharp corners are blunted.
Passionate and virile souls
abandon the earth,
dark blood stagnates in peace,
arid and dried up
no longer gushing forth in its purity.
Those who soared in the sky have broken wings
while termites mock
immortal glory.
In days like that,
why would His Majesty
become an ordinary man?
From Eirei no Koe (Voices of the Heroic Spirits), 1966, translated from an Italian edition by Giuliano Adriano Malvicini

http://democratia-mortui.blogspot.co.uk/2013/11/yukio-mishima-voices-of-heroic-spirits.html

 

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One Comment

  1. in italiano
    Posted January 10, 2016 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

    Ora non tutte le onde
    dei quattro mari sono tranquille,
    ma nella terra di Yamato,
    ove sorge il sole,
    i ventri sono sazi, ci si dedica ai piaceri.
    Sotto la virtuosa guida di Sua Maestà
    regna ovunque la pace.
    Pigri e calmi sorrisi si scambia la gente,
    commerci si intrecciano,
    si stringono accordi con i nemici,
    si corre, spinti da danaro straniero.
    Chi più non desidera combattere
    indulge nella viltà:
    la guerra, divenuta un fastidio,
    ormai aligna nell’ombra.
    Svanita è la fiducia fra sposi, fra amici,
    è in auge la falsa democrazia,
    invaso è il mondo
    dell’ipocrita armonia familiare.
    Deviate le energie, spregiati i corpi,
    i giovani sono stretti alla gola
    da inerzia, droga, ambizione,
    e come pecore in gregge avanzano
    verso mediocri desideri
    privi di speranza.
    Anche i piaceri hanno perso
    il loro gusto,
    e la lealtà il suo vigore.
    Tutte le anime sono bacate,
    e diffusa dai vecchi con il nome di etica
    ovunque regna una vile volontà
    di affermare sè stessi
    e una spregevole sicurezza.
    Negata è la verità,
    languono i veri sentimenti,
    la speranza non anima più
    i passi di chi cammina,
    le risa degli idioti risuonano ovunque,
    su ogni fronte è scritta
    la morte dello spirito.
    Gioia e dolore subito svaniscono,
    venduta è la purezza,
    persino la lussuria si esaurisce:
    soltanto al danaro si pensa,
    il suo valore è superiore a quello
    degli esseri umani.
    Anche chi si rivolta
    cerca a modo suo
    astutamente una quieta dimora,
    chi è all’apice della fama,
    pago di sè,
    gonfia oscenamente le gote.
    Una decadente bellezza
    invade il mondo,
    soltanto le ignobili verità sono credute,
    cresce delle automobili il numero
    e l’insulsa velocità frantuma le anime.
    Si costruiscono edifici immani,
    ma crollano le grandi cause,
    le finestre sono rischiarate da luci al neon
    dei desideri insoddisfatti,
    un mattino dopo l’altro
    sorge un sole opaco di smog,
    ottusi sono i sentimenti,
    smussati gli angoli acuti.
    Le anime appassionate e virili
    abbandonano la terra,
    torbido sangue ristagna nella pace,
    secco e inaridito
    non zampilla più nella sua purezza.
    Chi volava nel cielo ha le ali spezzate,
    mentre le termiti dileggiano
    la gloria immortale.
    In simili giorni,
    perchè mai Sua Maestà
    diviene un uomo comune?

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