Books: The Suicide's Art

RUNAWAY HORSES by YUKIO MISHIMA

Translated by MICHAEL GALLAGHER

421 pages. Knopf. $7.95.

Yukio Mishima completed his tetralogy, The Sea of Fertility, one November morning in 1970. Then he dressed himself in the somewhat Grau-starkian uniform of his private army, the Shield Society, and led a group of young right-wing followers to a military headquarters in western Tokyo. There, in a violent and extravagantly eccentric display of the artist engage, he broke into the commander's office, harangued some mocking soldiers from a balcony about the disgraces of fading Japanese imperial tradition, withdrew and committed...

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