ArabLit is delighted to announce that this year’s judges selected five stories for the shortlist of the 2021 ArabLit Story Prize, by five writers from four countries: Syria, Egypt, Lebanon, and Morocco.
"In the end, they were like two birds perched in the tree. They stood behind the window and looked at the garden, which grew wider and wider to include the whole scene, where the old ones’ inner monologue ran like rushing water in the spaces of the evening, with senility’s trembling echoes."
"Sheikhun Muharram disappeared."
"Death called me a couple of hours ago and told me in its foggy and cold voice that it wanted to visit me."
"The no-hair phenomenon certainly has a backstory. "
"Forty hours passed, and Sa’ad’s memory was a moon hanging over the perturbed sky of the African continent. "
"The next day, he was watching a livestream on television when he saw his dream on the screen. The streets of Beirut were flooded with mounds of garbage. This was the first step, he thought. Next, the piles of rubble would appear, and the people would vanish, leaving the buildings deserted."
"Lights are running towards me. It’s the first time I’ve seen lights with legs. It’s not a cartoon, these are actual lights, running so fast they are panting; I see their tongues lolling out, drooling as if they are about to leap on someone and shred him with their sharp fangs."
"His heart will trill as he draws in his bounty. He will sniff the mouth of each fish for that aroma he adores. Perhaps the fish will bring him treasures from the depths. Her ring. Her necklace. Some trinket or keepsake."