This just in from Swarthyface:
Posted below is the latest draft of my translation of Ishikawa Jun's xxxxx (『xx』, 1935). The plot can be summarized as follows:
Guy (the story's narrator and protagonist who in many ways resembles the real-life Ishikawa Jun) wanders around a NE suburb of Tokyo in search of the axis mundi, discovers that there is no such thing, forces self to stop dabbling in poetry, begins a disappearing act (by which he sheds, one by one, the various layers of self, starting with emotions, in an effort to reduce self to pure cogito), finds only a void at self's center, attempts suicide, fails, is reduced to pure physicality, ravishes his wife's sister (suggesting the possibility of spiritual redemption through the flesh/barbarization/daraku), confesses that he suffers from a condition known as "nympholepsy," and abruptly cuts narrative off in media res.
To have the text read to you, click on this I-speech button:
(***Removed to prevent plagiarism, Sally Suzuki, 1/25/12)And finally, I am indebted to the Beholdmyswarthyface Foundation for the grant that made experimental work on this translation possible. I am also indebted to Professors xxxxxx and xxxxxxxx, both of whom read my translation against the original, and made many helpful suggestions.