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American Immigrant

I never knew what my country was, until I decided to move away.
Craig M. Chavis, Jr.
Peru 2014–2016

audio: Poem reading

Land of the free and home of the brave,

Built on the backs of others – the poor and the enslaved.
Supposedly, meritocracy reigns free, with the cream rising to the top;
But fallacies like trickle-down economics have been exposed; drop by drop.

I was told to stop questioning, turn a blind eye, and always obey;

Sadly, I never knew what my country was, until I decided to move away.
Red, white, and blue; it all seemed so perfect.
But for months I doubted my decision to leave; was it all worth it?

See, I was programmed to believe that I knew it all.

Thankfully I was incorrect, and my ego disintegrated like leaves in the fall. Not looking back, I naively moved forward and boarded that plane; Unprepared for the unknown, unprepared for change.

Goodbye America, my once forever home;

I was born a nomad, why should I resist my calling to roam?
Never in my wildest dreams could this have been true.
That I would discover my life’s calling after serving in the Peace Corps in Peru.

I was now an American Immigrant, isn’t that quite odd?

Not for me, I answered my calling, which came directly from God.
Now paying it forward to help those in need,
My mission is simple; live life on your terms and escape from a system that’s built on greed.

Looking back, this all seems so farfetched – a fantasy, a dream

But I was rewarded for staying the course and embracing the unseen.
So, when you arrive at the next crossroads in your life, respond and don’t react;

Take the road less traveled, you won’t regret it – trust me that’s a fact.

Brief Biography

 I served as a Community Economic Development Specialist in Tambogrande, Piura, Peru from 2014 to 2016. My main focus was on youth entrepreneurship, and with local agrarian associations. I participated in fair trade certification, imports, exports, and training business owners to use tools to make their operational efficient. I taught over 300 students how to write business plans, helped ten to launch their own startups.

I have so much love for all the Volunteers I served alongside in Peru. Through the various ups and downs, we enjoyed great times, and made the world a better place.

Currently, I live in Columbus, OH, and own/operate Cre8ive Craig LLC – a creative agency that offers branding, strategy consulting, and business coaching. 

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