Emily Dickinson THE American Gangster -- The Straddler Spring Summer 2008 Issue ONE
“Belief and seeing, they're both often wrong.”



I have a friend, a Benedictine monk who has lived a hermetic way of life in California outside his community, for decades. It was not always so. He began his life in diplomacy and the foreign service.

In 1945 he was the youngest Vice Consul in the country and was set to sail to Egypt on a boat out of New York.

Before he boarded ship, he went to a second hand bookstore on the lower east side and browsed. In the process he casually pulled a book off a shelf; it was written by Simone Weil.