Assassins aren’t just rakish men
who blend like medicine
in a glucose drip
to eliminate a rival
whose death can be
justified as trivial
like the hassasis,
whose rages quelled any challenge,
the intoxication of implacability
with heavy bitters seizes all diplomacy
and like the unfortunate demises
of Soleimani, Archduke Ferdinand
or President Diem, surely the new order,
more amenable, will accept
the displacement, like a game of Stratego,
number 3 can become number 2
and heir to the throne,
despite necessary, temporary grief
so long as the boss’s express
message is minded:
nothing personal about a drone delivery.
* Assassin per the Oxford English Dictionary: mid 16th cent.: from French, or from medieval Latin assassinus, from Arabic ḥašīšī ‘hashish-eater’.
Michel Krug is a Johns Hopkins Writing Seminars and University of Minnesota Law School grad. He writes poetry and literary fiction and practices law. His poems have appeared in PRTN, Door Is A Jar, Tuck Magazine, The Raven’s Perch, Poetry24, Main Street Rag and Brooklyn Review.