Literary Gut Punch: from Neil Smith's Green Fluorescent Protein

A = Neil Smith, B = readers.

A = Neil Smith, B = readers.

I love a sentence I can chew on. The kind of sentence (or small bundle of sentences) that are delivered like a swift punch to the gut. The kind of punch you don't see coming and it sends all the breath straight out of you. I'm going to start sharing my favourite Literary Gut Punches (LGP) as I experience them, from stories new and old.

The first LGP is delivered via a few devastating, lovely lines from Neil Smith's story Green Fluorescent Protein which you can find in his debut story collection Bang Crunch (2007)The story was shortlisted for the 2002 Journey Prize, and apparently was the first story he ever wrote. Go figure that it actually mentions guts!

"You hate her, don't you?" I finally said. "You hate her guts."
"No, Max," he said, wiping the snot with the back of his hand. "I was crying because I love her guts."

Image credit: Alain Delmas (France) (Own work) [CC BY-SA 2.5 (], via Wikimedia Commons