Sex as an Introduction to Betrayal in ‘The Posman Knocks the Door Twice’ | Mohammed Al-Hamamsi

The American author James Mullahan Kane published his first novel, “The Postman Knocks the Door Twice” in 1934 to cause a great stir in conservative American society in the thirties of the last century due to its violence and sexual content, as its events combine passion and crime, the crime of infidelity, and lovers Frank and Cora conspired to kill the man and seize his wealth. It’s the story of a sly conspiracy with sexual bodily characteristics that sometimes acts like a dream, other times like a helpless kite separated by its rope, told by Frank from his prison cell after being sentenced to death.

Frank, a reckless bum criminal, who is not good at any of the professions, struggles in pool rooms to earn a few dollars along the way. outside industry. Los Angeles, and Nick hires Frank at the gas station. Frank approaches his wife Cora; An attractive woman in a cruel, emotional way, feels that she is still paying the price for a mistake she made in her youth, her relationship with her drunk husband is turbulent and sexual in a crisis.They decide that the only way to bind them permanently. living together is to end the man’s life. Cora confesses to her husband that she can no longer tolerate him, and the lover begins attempts to get rid of the man.

The first attempt to kill the man, after its failure, degenerates into a real circus, where the man happily returns to life with greater force after suffering a skull fracture that caused him to lose part of his memory. . But it’s time for an even more deadly plot to emerge and this time the game becomes dangerous and worrying. If things do not go as planned, three lives are in danger of deviating from their course. To make sure the man does not exist again, the method of execution would be a gruesome and “made up” car accident. Will Cora and Frank achieve the unthinkable? Can a man put sand in the gears of two would-be criminals?

Nick dies in the car accident, and with Cora and Frank getting rid of him, they marry, but events become more complicated as Cora discovers that Frank is having an affair with another woman.

The events of the novel, which Frank recounts from his first-person prison cell, strike like a bolt of lightning and see more twists and turns than the twists and turns of a treacherous mountain trail, the erotic shell, which is considered too inappropriate for the time of the novel s publication, reveals the turbulent psychological dimensions And they add extra perspective to the stormy narrative.

By the end of the novel, you never know what hit you or when. You can stagger and gasp and remain dazed, Cora died in a car accident while Frank was driving. Frank, who is now a death row inmate, writes his story and explains that he was wrongly convicted of the murder of Cora. He hopes his story will be published after his execution.

The novel, eventually released by Dar Al-Mada with the translation by Ahmed Hassan Al-Muaini, was filmed from the 1939 French film “The Last Turn on the Road” produced by the Italian film “Obsession “was manufactured. in 1943, and the American movie bearing the same name as the novel “The Postman Beats” The Door Twice “in 1946, the French film” Scream of terror “produced in 1963, the American film” The Postman Knocks the Door Twice ”in 1981, the Malaysian film“ Shake my swing high, my love, ”produced in 2004, and finally the German film“ Jericho, ”produced in 2008.

It is noteworthy that the translator of the novel in the introduction to his translation pointed out that “one of the most important features of the literary tendency in which the author of the novel writes, the reliance on the everyday vernacular, is direct language, especially in dialogues. That’s why I chose to inoculate the text with some colloquial expressions and vocabulary close to the classic, to provide enough to suggest the existence of slang. “

Excerpt from the novel

They threw me out of the hay truck near noon, with which I “knocked out” at the border last night, and as soon as I got in and under the tarpaulin, I fell into a seventh sleep. I needed a lot of sleep after the three weeks in Tijuana, so when they stopped by the side of the road to cool the car, I was still asleep. When they saw my feet, they threw me. I tried to forgive, but what I said was not funny. They gave me a cigarette anyway, and I went looking for something to eat.

When I saw Oxes, it looked nothing more than a filthy sandwich shop down the road like millions of others in California. The restaurant consists of a dining room at the bottom and a residence at the top, and next to the restaurant there is a filling station, behind which are six huts which they call a car park. I rushed to the street, and when the Greek came I asked him if he saw anyone driving a Cadillac. I told him we were supposed to meet here for lunch, and the Greek said he did not see anyone today, so he set a table and asked me about my order. I said orange juice, cornflakes, fried eggs, bacon, enchilada, donuts and coffee. He soon returned with orange juice and corn flakes.

“A moment to be clear with you. The food is supposed to be at his expense, and I have not had enough. If the Cadillac owner does not come, you must trust me until I return and I will pay you. . “

“No problem. Everything at your convenience.”

I noticed he believed me, I did not mention the owner of the Cadillac again. Then I realized he wanted something.

“What are you doing? What are you doing, huh?”

“I take my existence from here and there. Why do you ask?”

“How old are you?”

“twenty four”.

“Guys, huh? I need a reason, he works here.”

“Your store is beautiful.”

“The sky. Beautiful. No mist like Los Angeles. Never miss. Beautiful, clear, always beautiful and clear.”

“It’s great at night, for sure … I know it from its smell.”

“Yes, sleep is comfortable. Do you understand about cars and their repairs?”

“Sure. I’m a natural mechanic.”

He’s talking about the air, and his excellent health since he bought this store, and he does not understand why those who work for him run away from him. I could see why, but I focused on the food.

“Do you think you will like it here?”

I was done with my coffee, and a cigar was offered to me. “Honestly, I have two more offers. That’s my problem. But I’ll think about it. Of course I will.”

Then I saw her. She was in the back, in the kitchen, but she came to get my plates. Except for her figure, she was not of striking beauty, but her gaze was grumpy, and her lips so tight that they had to be cut open.

“This is Madam.”

You did not look at me. I nod to the Greek, and wave my cigar, no more, and she comes out with the dishes, as if she did not come in the first place. I left the restaurant but returned five minutes later to leave a message for the Cadillac owner. I held back for half an hour before accepting the post. At the end of the day, I was at the gas station fixing my broken wheels.

“Hey, what is your mother?”

Frank Chambers.

And I’m Nick Papadaks.

We shook hands and left. A minute later I heard him sing. His voice was beautiful. From the gas station I could see the kitchen.

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