Oh, I Know Her as a Giver

Oh, I know her as a giver
We don’t give her enough credit
But I find it true indeed that she truly is a giver

What shall I deliver?
That we trully need a mirror?
Yes indeed, indeed we do
Perhaps we need to see clearer

She truly is a giver but one that is human
Human enough to be selfish while giving those around her gifts
At least she’s sweet to me, call me spoiled, bribed and naive
But I see a side different that I could truly admire

The most amazing thing is that she doesn’t have anyone as a peer
She sits alone and thinks alone and yet doesn’t have any fear
I’d hate it. I’d loath ’till the heart within me sheds tears
I don’t know where she finds the patience to be here

Once again, she sits today not thinking of what is coming near
Within her is a strength that we’ve never seen appear
Once stubborn and once closed she pursues another frontier
Without even leaving her chair and not expressing any need for cheer

Oh, I know her as a giver
We don’t give her enough credit for it
But I find it true indeed that she truly is a giver

Born into a poor family she became incredibly tough skinned
and from that raised her family in a very similar way
It pushed some away and in strange ways brought some closer
And now there’s more to her family that allows them to flourish
But despite all of this she still remains alone.
Some hobbies and some friends while waiting hopefully at the phone
Maybe today somebody will giver her a call which allows her be happy like a shot of euphoria to that sharp witted brain.
But let us never forget while she is still here that she is nothing to us that she is the greatest giver
Once selfish, now selfless, she sits all alone only giving and giving
and that is why I love her, my nearest and dearest Grandma

Oh, I know her as a giver
We don’t give her enough credit for it
But I find it true indeed that she truly is a giver

A Golden Age (inspired by The Golden Age by Woodkid)


BEFORE YOU READ: Listen to the actual song it is inspired by and you will understand in a much more clear way where I am getting at. 


A Golden Age by Chaz Thrive Volk


Running, playing, singing, freedom

We can see the future oh so well

My friends, we’re alive and

I wouldn’t be anywhere else

In our crazy worlds we

Live a rich life


A Golden Age is Over (x2)


Cue to blocking on the stage

Monologue, action with a mask

Audiences applaud

In the dark

But I see you clearly

And your mixed in with them


A Golden Age is Over (x2)




But no, you’re not there. You’re here. In my embrace, and we are in love, and we are reliving it all!


Listen to the laughter we made

I can hear it echo all day

We would be weird and

You’d pet my hair

We’d drive to our date and we’d see through eachother’s eyes

Unafraid and endless like the candle we lit

Now we are alive and are completely attached


But a Golden Age is Over

A Golden Age is Over

A Golden Age is Over

I wish it wasn’t over



One could say that I love to fish. Every good fisherman has their favorite place to fish. Some prefer the shallow waters of the Pacific while others prefer the deep waters of the Pacific. Some prefer the docks off the Atlantic while others prefer being on a ship battling the harsh conditions of the Atlantic. That’s how it works, right? Regardless, the way that I fish is entirely different. I don’t fish in oceans nor lakes nor rivers. I fish on my school campus… in the quad… which is a cement paved public area full of people who each have their own individual stories- some that are obvious and most that are not so much.

What I’m really doing is People Watching.

Yes, this go-to pastime activity is what I do constantly while walking, talking, sitting, contemplating, etc.

If you are in my life, chances are that I have fished real deep into the little clues that you carry upon yourself until I am satisfied with a story that helps me see you in a much more enjoyable way.

The person I will be looking into is a person who doesn’t know that I look up to him/her. No names will be given. The truth is I know him/her as a friend but not enough to call him/her someone that I truly know which leaves me no choice but to figure him/her out on my own. 

One day, I’m sitting in the quad when I feel a story brewing up as I watch you from afar. You’re talking with some friends and I’m just sitting there making a story about you:

This person is from overseas as X is in the secret service from his home country on a mission to receive intelligence. He’s/she’s not actually here to learn or make friends but rather to grab as much information as he/she can until headquarters is satisfied. How do I know this? Look at X’s athleticism! X has the ability to take action in any situation. If X were from middle east, he/she would be compared to the skill set that of The Zohan as he/she knows parkour, martial arts, camouflage skills, and most importantly, his surroundings. He/she is very skilled indeed. Despite what his/her natural body can do X is especially knowledgeable with weaponry whether it is the use of blunt objects, sharp weapons or firearms. X, though, prefers blunt objects. Having killed many people, in his/her opinion too many people, his/her demons haunt him/her at night time causing him/her to shuffle about in his/her dreams. Several times a month he/she will have a nightmare.

All this being said, he/she lives here in America not only for the sake of his/her mission but actually has an even deeper reason for accepting the mission. X hates war. X hates all the killing. X hates the hate… ironically. He/she has been exposed to it all his/her life and wished to be put on leave for his own mental sake. The secret service, having respect for X, gave him/her the chance to take an easy and much more calm mission. So far, X has grown a lot since his/her arrival from the airport. X has made many new friends and discovered many new things about the things he/she likes and the things that makes him/her feel good. I sometimes help you in that friend department. Finding time he/she will always enjoy a good day of sitting on the pleasant open grass areas of SFSU to read and relax. You’re always out there. On his/her spare time there is always a party to embrace the nightlife with. During the day he/she works hard to accomplish something new. I’ve been with you at parties. Perhaps there is a chance for X in this part of the naive world we live in. Overall, though, there is a sense of serenity here. Something that he/she has never quite felt before in his/her life. Now, X has many new friends and ambitions to go about here. X exercises and subtly teaches people his,her skills without them knowing it. Why, just the other day you taught me the important skill of needing to let go of the little things because there is nothing worse than dealing with little taunts and teasing comments from peers right? You would know best that there are worse things out there. Because of this, X hasn’t had one nightmare in the past three weeks- a record since his active duty back home.

One day he/she gets a call- A call from home- A not so pleasant call- One of those calls that after so much progress has been made is telling you that you must go back to where you started. X isn’t going home, though. He/she now must go somewhere in this world. He/she tells us it’s a study abroad program in order to cover this up but I seem to be the only one who really knows what’s going on here. His/her friends are sad to see him/her leave but it’s something that must be done. He/she just might die. There’s doubt, but still, it’s something consider when taking a mission- in fact the only mission that X ever took without considering the possibility of death was this one. There’s a sense of safety yet excitement here- the intuitive to create ambition on this campus is almost frightening, that’s how amazing it was for him/her here.

Now he/she leaves to wear that camouflage again. Now he/she leaves to get a gun strapped to his/her chest again. Now he/she faces his greatest nightmare again as he was bred for moments like these all his/her life. It’s time to protect what X loves most- his country.

He/she hasn’t left yet but this personal friend I will miss dearly until he/she comes back. I’ll miss him/her. X, you have been fished and people watched. I have analyzed you and wish you the time of your life… on that top secret mission.

You finish your conversation and turn away to walk to your next class. On the way around you notice me and approach me curiously. I stand up and greet you.

“Hey Chaz, what are you doing here?” he/she says surprised.

“Eh, not much. Just passing time,” I give a little smirk and shake his hand.

My Bedroom

Featured image

We all love a nice comfy bedroom. It’s nice and warm with custom walls painted to your desire. A bed that may be simple or full of just enough fluff to douse you to sleep after leaping joyfully into its embrace. All your favorite gadgets and toys are in their, too, designed for ergonomic convenience and pleasure to the maximum. A desk may be in there, too, to help you focus on what’s important in life and all of your inspirations and accomplishments are either posted on the wall in a picture frame or are collecting dust on that sturdy shelf. Your secrets are kept in there but even more so your social environments are made public too. To top all of this off, there’s a window normally, and in this case it faces out to a world of adventure and chaos. Your bedroom is a pitstop to bask in pleasure, rejuvenate and construe pure ambition. What a better place than to do this… Right?

I come home everyday after long and busy days. I just took a relaxing shift at work. I got work done for projects that go beyond school. I said hi and chatted with a few dozen friends right before I went home. I ate somewhere new today on campus. I experienced something inspirational. The best part is that I breathed in a good whiff of fresh air today. Man, it was fresh. That was the highlight of it all. Then I get to my bedroom. Everything is as it was before. The sheets are undone. There’s still dirty clothes on the floor from the previous day. Even the dust particles made visible by the rays of light are in the same place as they were yesterday. I rip my clothes off and take a hot shower, watch some tunes and whatever show I’m devoted to. I hangout with my roommates who are goofing around and being silly. God bless them.

But now it’s late and I’m tired with bags of sleepiness forming under my eyes. My drowsy self wishes everyone a goodnight as my body slumps itself into the bedroom- my bedroom. I shut the door… and this is where serenity escapes the mindset. I get myself tucked in and stretch my legs to the foot of the bed and begin to relax… and relax… and not really relax… and think… and ponder… to the point where sleeping is out of the question. My tiredness escapes me as I reflect on a mirror that is devious and distorted. Thoughts are just as busy as a freeway, now, as they race through the mind angrily in their own self-loathing ways.

Remember, when you said hi to person A today? Yeah, why? Well, all I know is that Person A has been doing things with Crush A for a while now. You shouldn’t pursue it Chaz. It’s out of your league. Alright, fine but given some time it’s possible for things to happen, right? No, Chaz, look at the way she looks at you. How many decent conversations have you ever had with her, huh? Like 2 and those were when you were stuck with her for over 10 minutes at a time. Yeah, so what? I just met her. Why would that be an issue. Remember Douche A from that class your in? He pulls pussy left and right from first encounters all the time. How come you can’t do that? Too fat? Too boring? Huh, why? No, Brain, that’s not why. It’s because I’m a relationship kind of guy who is more attracted to personality rather than body curves. Yeah, that explains why you only got with the ugly crowd last year, huh? Ugly crowd? They weren’t ugly. They were my friends which made the situations ugly! What is one supposed to do when they were as emotionally messed up as me? Speaking of that how is Ex A doing these days? She accomplishes so much and look at you! Frat boy partying all the time, frying his mind with senseless rap music. You’re lame man. If you had balls you would still be in that relationship. Fuck you, Brain. I loved her and that’s why I let her go without a fight. You don’t know my pain! You don’t know why I do the things I do! Of course, I do. I’m the brain. I’m the one who inflicts them. So why do you do that then? You know what kind of pain you cause. Sure I do. I do it because you gotta be an actual someone someday. If I don’t push you then who will? Fuck you, I don’t need the extra load. Do you see how hard I work? Do you see how far I stick my neck out there? Yeah, far enough for me to get an easy chop at it with an axe. You’re a turkey just stuck in the rain waiting for God-knows-what to intrigue them from the clouds above. You don’t do anything for me! It’s my will power that brings me through the day! Will power? Will power! Who do you think gave you that misguided will power? Me, asshole. Me and the strength that I took from pains of the external world. Right, and I suppose you’re going to thrive from this great sense of will power too, huh? You’ve crossed too many lines, Brain. No, Chaz, you’ve crossed too many lines. Open your eyes and the evidence will be in front of you.

The fight can’t be won as the brain is smarter than the heart. With another round lost, the heart causes every inch of muscle in my body to tense so tight that not even Alexander the Great could pull his sword out of them. I jot up awake from the horrible fight panting and sweating, wiping the salty, cold liquid off my forehead. I sit up as my vision is still foggy. I rub my eyes but the nightmare isn’t over as around me are judgmental skeletons of old and new. One to my left. One to my right. One on the ceiling. One below my bed. One on the floor. One on my couch. One peering through the window. One stealing the food from my fridge. Where are they coming from? My closet. My closet is full of them. They march out in a parade like the brooms from Fantasia and surround me with emptiness in their expressions. Each of them are all knowing and they stay in protest against the monster that has awoken before them.

“Please go away,” I say weakly with no energy to fight.

Yeah you would ask for forgiveness wouldn’t you, pussy. Shutup, Brain! 

“Please,” I begin to sob in frustration, “You’re all from the past. I don’t deserve any of this. I’ve learned from you all already.”

They don’t respond and only creep in slowly with bony white hands reached out to strangle me.



The skeletons completely cover men now as10 of them at least get on top with their grips around my neck.

Suddenly, I wake up. Was it a dream? No.

I take my shower, get dressed and briefly eat my low calorie breakfast. Time to get to work. As I walk out of the door of my house, while playing my obscure music choices, my heart begins to calm and my brain keeps functioning normally… for now.

The Final Trial


Henry had died a heroic death. A car was speeding nearly out of control towards an old woman in downtown Los Angeles when he dove into the headlights of a corvette while pushing an old woman out of the way. With a flattened body whose bones were so badly crushed a soul floated up above the clouds as the blood spread into a deep red puddle on the streets.

Unconscience, Henry would rise to an unknown world where the grounds were marble, the columns were a solid stone and the ceilings were fluffy white clouds.

“Get up!” were the first words that Henry heard in this foreign and unseen world. His eyes shot open and his body sprang up heaving what it could as the shock of being hit by a car were still engrained in his body. Suddenly, he realized there was no more pain. He patted himself up and down realizing that all injuries obtained from the accident were now gone. Relieved he laughed to himself and chuckled. An action with no consequence? Wonderful.

“Shut up!” was the second phrase that Henry heard that brought him to attention. Before him, he saw a jury of twleve to his left and a judge sitting behind a podium directly in front. There was no audience.

“Do you know where you are?” asked the judge, a man dressed in a traditional gown and whig.

“No. Some sort of court, right?” responded Henrey hesitantly.

The judge smiled at the ignorant guess, “You are in God’s court and if you pass you shall go to heaven and if you don’t then you shall go to places so horrible that they are unspeakable. One wrong answer and you shall die. Say and mean the correct answer and you shall dwell in God’s garden, also known as Heaven. Do we understand the terms of your conditions?”

“Heaven? I-I died?” said Henry nervously.

“That’s generally what happens when you run in front of high speeding vehicles. Know the consequences of your actions before you act! Shall we begin?”

“Um, sure.”

“Get over here!”

Henry, caught off guard walked hastily to the middle of the court room.

“State your name and religion.”

Caught off guard, again, he blurted “Henry Michaelson, sir… and Religion? Would I be going to hell if I said Atheist?”

“No, you just have to swear on your family’s existence. But, before you answer, you are in God’s court so you better think about what you truly believe in. Remember, God respects honesty.”

“Okay, then yes I’ve been Atheist.”

“Do you swear?”

“Yes I swear I’m Atheist.”

“No do you swear that you are telling the truth?”

“Oh… Yes.”

“Good. Now as you see we don’t do things traditionally around here. Seems Earth these days, especially America, tries to fancy things up making everything ‘official’”, he made the quote signs with his fingers, “ Are you ready to begin trial for entry?”

“I am,” said Henry confidently.

With that, the Judge flipped open a heavy book to its first page, “I see here that you died saving an old woman’s life. Good for you. You made a Grandma and a family very happy. She’ll live another four years because of you.”

“You know this?”

“They will be visiting your funeral in gratitude this Sunday. Yes. I also see that you have other questionable reasons, though, that justify not allowing you entry into the gates of Heaven.”

“Well I mean, whatever I did I meant nothing personal by it. It truly must have be-”

“Silence. You speak when I allow you to speak. You listen when you are required to listen. Pop quiz. Which should you be doing now? Listening or Speaking?”

“Speaking now as I am doing now but once my lips close I assume listening like a good little school boy,” Henry said with a slight smirk on his face.

The judge disaproved of this very much, “Smart ass.”


“I see here that you have had many sexual encounters with women over the past 27 years of your life. You have beeen in three major relationships, 49 sexual encounters and have experienced God’s pleasure of intercourse exactly 149 times. Not bad.”

“Um, I’m sorry. I have a question,” asked Henry worriedly, “Actually two. Do I get a lawyer and isn’t this somewhat personal- this previous question?”

“As I said before, Mr. Michaelson, this court is not traditional and no, nothing is too personal when it comes to the topic of sin versus non-sin.”

“Okay,” he held his wrist in his hand.

“Out of these 49 sexual encounters, 30 were womanized by your persistance and 5 are on Earth still thinking that you will call them back. In a couple of days they will hear the news from a newspaper and realize that it’s time for them to move on.”

“Womanize?” Henry was insulted,“ That’s a strong word to label me as. I am not a womanizer. Those women, I had met at clubs and bars. They knew what they were getting into!”

“98 percent of them asked for your number due to how you made them think that there was more beyond the one night stand. Only 2 percent of them knew the truth because of random moments of honesty that you never tend to show. Why is that?”

Henry was in disbelief, “I stand here fighting for my right to experience heaven and what you go to is how I treated women?”

“Not just any women, Mr. Michaelson, but women that you took advantage of in their innebriated states and had sex with.”

“I never got any of them pregnant!” Henry defensively said.

“Yes you did. One girl, Veronica Seth, got an abortion and never told anyone about it because of how ashamed she was. You put a woman in a difficult position that caused her to cut the potential out of someone else’s life that she never got to know.”

Henry fell silent and ashamed.

“Have you anything to say?”

Henry knew that even the word ‘sorry’ wouldn’t cut the deed he had done.

“Moving on,” continued the judge, “Let’s go to middle school. Chucky Lickson- does that name ring a bell?”

“Somewhat, ” said Henry slowly. His head raised in interest, “What did I do to him?”

“It’s not what you did that matters in this situation, Henry. What you really should be asking is what you did not do.”

“What did I not do?”

“Chucky Lickson was in trouble on a Friday afternoon right after school. Do you remember what happened?”

“No. I remember him though. He was that weird kid who always called us best friends even though I only knew his name and nothing else. What happened?”

“Well, one day he stepped onto the wrong side of the playing field which caused the five territorial bullies of the school to pier pressuring him into meeting them behind the school near the dumsters when class ended. Remember now?”

“No. It was sixth or seventh grade. How would I?”

“Well, Chucky Lickson went to his best friend for help. Do you remember how you helped him?”

“No. Not exaclty. Didn’t I tell him to not meet the bullies and just leave the situation?”

“Exact opposite, actually. You told him that he should face them so that he could, and I quote, ’ become cool like me’.”

“I never said that,” objected Henry.

“Yes you did. Everyone on this jury is witness to the event. Right jury?”

The jury members all hastily nodded their heads in agreement with the judge like a shelf of bobble heads in a bobble head store.

“But I was never the cool kid at my school! Barely anyone knew me!” said Henry with pressure welding up in his back.

“Oh yes you did. In fact that was how your friendship lasted up until his loss of mobility.”

“Loss of mobility? And, again, what friendship?”

“This is what went down. He would come to you always asking for advice because you were the only one who cared, or so he thought. You’d always give him the worst advice at the expense of his misery- and for what? Pure entertainment. The real bully during this time weren’t those who temporarily disabled him. It was you for telling him he could get all the girls at the school if you, and I again quote, ‘manned up with your fists up their asses.’ Remember now?”

“No. Because I didn’t do it. I don’t remember it at all.”

The judge with no choice stood up and called behind Henry’s position, “We’d like to call Chucky Lickson to the front as witness, please.”

Suddenly, a bright opening that remained as an abyss opened up on the marble walls in the back of the court where Chucky Lickson walked out in a ghostly and haunting manner. With a blank expression on his face he stood face to face with his old time friend from the one-sided friendship.

“Remember now?” said Chucky as his eyes beamed into the pupils of Henry’s.

In a heavenly way, suddenly Henry saw his actions.

“Yes. Yes, unfortunatly I do remember, “Henry saw everything beyond just his own doing now,” I told you to man up and fight them. When you did I never saw you again- because you were in the hospital for the next five years. It took you eight surgies to fix your neck after it had been stepped on and another three surgies to fix your legs. You lived a happy life after that until you were randomly caught in the destruction of the 9/11 attacks in New York, “Chucky broke eye contact with Henry and began to walk away, “Those were five years you could have spent well. Chucky… Chucky!”

Chucky didn’t respond. He just kept walking back into the mysterious bright abyss world.

“Chucky! I’m sorry Chucky! I’m sorry!”

Chucky disappeared into the bright abyss where the opening would shut closed from an unknown source. The abyss suddenly was inexistent.

Henry turned around to the judge fearing the sudden lonely feeling that settled deep in his stomach.

“The last case we will be reviewing is your relationship with your origins,” said the Judge sorrowly.

“My origins?” asked Henry lost.

“Yes your family. Specifically with your mom and dad.”

Henry slowly turned himself around now and braced for impact, “Let’s hear it,” his eyes remained low and sad.

“Your relationship with your mom and dad are fine. That is all.”

Confused, Henry looked up at the judge who sat there pleasantly and satisfied.

“You ready to go to Heaven, kid?”

“No,” said Henry agrily, “I’m not ready at all!”

“Really? This is a first. Explain.”

The jury was as confused as the judge.

“My relationship with my parents are horrible. My mom and dad, God bless their souls by the way, are wonderful people who made sure that before I was born, were financially ready for an only child like myself. They were so prepared they gathered finances that could have lasted for three children after me- even with inflation! And what did I do with that money? I went to public schools so I could take the spare money and spend it on myself. Hell, growing up, all I would do is ask them for money. ‘Buy me this!’ ‘Buy me that!’ All these money needs so I could look fancy and pick up chicks I would meet at school. And why did I spend so much money on clothes and fancy shit? Because I didn’t like the person who looked back at me in the mirror. So with slicked hair and button ups I strided through the streets and fed an ego that was built entirely on their wealth. And for what? So I could brag to my friends about all the pussy I was never getting at the age of 15? So I could raise my status in the hierarchy of cool kids at the highschool I went to? So I could cheat the education system of college so I would graduate faster and get a job working at same unfulfilling career? The only reason why my flat is so nice is because I still relied on them for money. I didn’t deserve a single dime of it and they still fed it to me. They did this because they loved me and didn’t know any other way to love me. They wanted me to be the best, so money became the root of our love. God Dammit I don’t know how anyone does it anymore!”

“Does what?” asks the judge.

“Does… Life! This weird challenging place full of social norms and responsibilities- and when you’ve completed one, there’s another- and when you’ve completed that there’s another miserable one. All these responsibilities and choices!” Henry collapsed to the ground crying, “I hate Earth. I hate what it made me. I hate that this world makes everything about status!”

“Status. What an interesting concept,” the judge got up from his podium and walked down to the marble floors that Henry wept on. The jury remained silent and continued to judge the situation, “Stand up, boy.”

“Why? It’s meaningless. Just send me to hell already.”

“We haven’t even come to a verdict yet. Please stand.”

Henry wiped his face and stood face to face with the old judge. In the judge’s face, he could see the grey old skin and the dry, fragile wrinkles on his cheaks. His eyes sagged and his jaw was stirdy. This man had been through a lot.

“I see a boy who merely hasn’t lived a proper life, and given the deeds you have commited and faced today, I have an understanding for your loss. Just the fact that you would throw yourself in front of a speeding car shows much about your personality. You are just a boy unsure of what you can truly offer this world. This first moment you ever saw that you could offer something meaningful was when you threw yourself in front of that car. You are only a human but even more so, a hero, ” he faced the jury, “What shall it be, angels of God?”

All stood together uniformly and said, “Heaven.”

The bright abyss opening flashed open behind Henry.

“Go forth, Henry Michaelson. You have passed the test.”

“I don’t deserve it,” said Henry sadly in his own misery.

“Yes you do,” said the Judge, “You are only a human and we were testing that you had the compassion of one. You are obviously a member of God’s garden. Go forth, kid. Go forth.”

Henry began to understand and shook the judges hand firmly with respect like no other. He turned around and entered a place so amazing that the words I type couldn’t express its beauty.

My Waterfront

I would say, I am in love with that classic mobster style- The cold, quick witted minds that run the streets using fear with a dash of class. No mobster was like Marlon Brando’s mobster, though. Perhaps, he was most acclaimed for The Godfather rather than On the Waterfront. However, in my opinion, it should be acclaimed the other way around. So much character and humanistic qualities came from Terry Malloy, a hard skinned gangster who’s family was born in the wrong neighborhood.

I could go on to tell you the plot summary of such a figure but I realize it wouldn’t do this blog any justice given that the plots of my life and his are entirely different. Just know this:

This blog is My Waterfront because the Waterfront was a challenge that brought such a character as Terry Malloy, a narrow sighted pigeon in the coup of injustice that fed as he fed, schemed as he schemed and fought the way he fought, to a place that defined him as a man that stared evil in the eye and turned them naked and ashamed in the blink of an eye.

I strive for power like that. Not power in the corrupt sense but rather power that has the capability to defy the bad and define my identity and for that reason I feel the need to write. Write like never before until people can understand who and what I am. Strength doesn’t come from the hardness in your biceps but rather the ability to see right from wrong and act by that despite the circumstances.

Oskar Schindler once said,” Power is when we have every justification to kill, and we don’t.”

This is a lesson I still am learning the nature of.

And as I face this waterfront with pride yet fear, I choose toThrive no matter what the cost. That is my nature.



My Identity (A Proper Introduction) –

HI everyone (Yes, I do mean everyone). On here I go by Chaz Thrive Volk, my stage name, but in reality (the reality that goes beyond my imaginative mind and ego) my name is Charles Bennett Volk.

I never really thought much of my identity until people told me I was less of a person because of it. This first happened in elementary school. The first identity that I was recognized for was being “The Fat Kid”. Before, I was justCharles and to some Chaz but to everyone I was “The Fat Kid”. Then, I entered middle school where I was bullied for being “The Jew”. Here I found myself standing alone in verbal fights and, later on, physical fights. In 8th grade I was the victim of a hate crime that left me paralyzed in the dream of bloodthirsty revenge (This is where my imagination kicked in – counting out my desire to draw when I was younger).

SIDE NOTE: Revenge is a more addictive drug than heroin. Just dreaming about it can consume your body’s feelings and movements to the point where your body will literally jerk in the direction that you stabbed your victim in your day dream. I was haunted by the dreams my own mind produced and instead of going to therapy I remained lost in time.

I bring these things up because, like weathering, I was molded by forces around me that I couldn’t control. It’s like… I was a really weirdly shaped rock that started as one thing but then with harsh winds and ferocious tides I turned into the rock I am now. That is not to say that I was wrong for how I started in this strange and unpredictable life. This is to say that I began as one type of person and I am now this type of person. Still, I am made out of the same minerals that compose of my rock form but know that with shape comes new identity. If there is one thing I can say about this, it is that the weathering is no where close to being done which is why I take to heart the word Thrive.

THE above examples are just some of the hardships that I have faced in my life. I plan to share them all with you soon and in doing so hope you stay tuned as I hope to stay tuned with your incredible stories.