The Clothesline Swing

This novel by Ahmad Danny Ramadan is a journey through the troublesome aftermath of the Arab Spring.

Ahmad Danny Ramadan

The Clothesline Swing is a journey through the troublesome aftermath of the Arab Spring. A former Syrian refugee himself, Ramadan unveils an enthralling tale of courage that weaves through the mountains of Syria, the valleys of Lebanon, the encircling seas of Turkey, the heat of Egypt and finally, the hope of a new home in Canada.

Inspired by One Thousand and One NightsThe Clothesline Swing tells the epic story of two lovers anchored to the memory of a dying Syria. One is a Hakawati, a storyteller, keeping life in forward motion by relaying remembered fables to his dying partner. Each night he weaves stories of his childhood in Damascus, of the cruelty he has endured for his sexuality, of leaving home, of war, of his fated meeting with his lover. Meanwhile Death himself, in his dark cloak, shares the house with the two men, eavesdropping on their secrets as he awaits their final undoing. (From Nightwood Editions)

Read an excerpt | Author interview

From the book

The sweetest kisses are the ones we share in forbidden places. The kiss I stole from you in the back of a dark cab roaming Damascus, while the driver was cursing at checkpoints and wars; the time I pulled you back into the changing room in H&M in Beirut and printed my lips upon yours; the one you gave me as we hid in the depth of tall grass on Vancouver's Wreck Beach.

From The Clothesline Swing by Ahmad Danny Ramadan ©2017. Published by Nightwood Editions.

Author interview

Ahmad Danny Ramadan on his novel "The Clothesline Swing," about an elderly gay Syrian refugee trying to keep his partner alive by telling him stories.