Lot 645: ALS, one page, 9.75 x 7, no date. Letter to John Goodwin. In part: "I have a present for you. As you know, all Japanese are fond of giving presents to foreigners. But this one should be confidencial [sic] to my family; so I had to bring it to your hotel before seeing you. These are special paintings of naked tattooed boys which could interest you. I do hope these will pass through the custom office safely, when you'll leave this country!" In fine condition, with central vertical and horizontal folds and a light stain to the left edge.Born in 1912, John Goodwin was a wealthy novelist, poet, painter, and world traveler who shared several literary friends in the gay community with Mishima—most notably the novelist Christopher Isherwood. Despite a happy marriage, Mishima's sexuality was the subject of widespread controversy; his second novel, Confessions of a Mask, follows a young man tormented by homosexual urges as he tries to adapt to societal norms. The novel is generally considered semi-autobiographical, as is his slightly later work Forbidden Colors, which describes the marriage of a gay man to a young woman. In this letter Mishima's homosexual tendencies are more overt, revealed by the content of his presents and the need to hide them from his family. Mishima letters are scarce and those with such intriguing content are of the utmost desirability.
RR Auction's Fine Autographs and Artifacts Auction 462
Wednesday, 14th October 2015
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