was it because you were bullied in
school? were you abused as a child?
did you have a vendetta against society?
did the world just rub you the wrong way?
was it because you could only see sin in us all?
did you have undiagnosed mental issues that should
have gone diagnosed?

were you exposed to violent video games,
violent movies, violent comic books at a young age?
were you plotting this for months?
where were you when you decided to take the terror
inside of your broken rib cage and turn it into the
terror we all feel carving holes in our hands?
was it drugs? was it years and years of pent-up rage
and silence? was it something someone said to you
a long time ago that you could have told someone?
are you godless behind your hidden eyes?
were you broken to begin with? are you proof
that some of us are born with two demons on
our shoulders? that some of us enter through exit
doors in shameful masks to rip down the red curtains?
to pierce the surface of innocent skin and beautiful lives?
did you feel your skin pressing the trigger of the gun?
do you hear any of this in your head? most of us do.
most of us are playing judge, jury and executioner in
our hearts and in our heads. hosting trials
asking ourselves what is right and what is wrong
don’t you dare
be proud of yourself. don’t you dare
think i will remember your name. don’t you dare
say you’re sorry – most of us are questioning the state
of the color red but some of us
aren’t around anymore to do that. twelve of us
are stories that couldn’t be saved. twelve of us
are the names that should be remembered. twelve of us
will never see the end of the movie.

the rest of us
are still here saying prayers at dinner tables with empty
chairs. we are listening instead of hearing. we are speaking
instead of listening. why weren’t you? when did your sun go
down and why in the black night of aurora did you sneak
shadowed into these happy homes and tear apart the very
fabric of our humanity? where are you now? who
are you? i will not remember your name. you are not god.
you are not the devil. you are everything we are not; and
you are unanswered questions that you could have just
asked somebody.



My thoughts and prayers go out to the families and loved ones of those who died early today in the Aurora Theater Shooting. May those lost rest in peace. I can’t imagine what you’re going through and I wish you all the best in this impossibly tough time.


Author: brice maiurro

Denver poet. Author of Stupid Flowers, out now through Punch Drunk Press.

7 thoughts on “MOTIVE”

  1. I think the whole word has been touched with the Aurora Theater Shooting. My prayers and condolences go to all those suffering people who wonder if they will ever see their loved ones again…

    By the way, I have to say that I think your phisolophy and way of seeing things it’s amazing. Blogs like yours make me feel all my time spent following and reading other blogs is all worth it.

  2. Tragedies like this just break my heart and also anger me. Who knows if we’ll ever really know why. I think what you wrote reflects what we’re all thinking, and you did it beautifully.

    1. I hope so. There’s been so much tension, especially on medians like Facebook, that its hard to say much. We’re all tearing each other apart a little bit when she should be coming together and its hard to see.

  3. I heard about this the other night and was deeply shocked that there are still pathetic souls out there that are capable of such acts. I think this work speaks true in all our hearts. This thing doesn’t even deserve a name. He will be forgotten whilst those who remain here remember the names of the lost.


  4. great writing on such a tragic happening. I think there is, will be and always has been people, who for whatever reasons want to harm others. But never in history have individuals had the capacity to kill and maim with such ferocity and efficiency. This is due to the availability of the most needlessly and ridiculously dangerous weapons that can be bought legally in many countries around the globe. Until this situation changes, horrible tragedy’s like this one and the countless other murders and suicides by firearms will continue. as long as governments make billions in profits from the manufacture of arms, there will be no political will to arrest the situation.
    our prayers go to the victims and thier familys.

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