I stopped to see a painting by an artist named Rene
A beautiful tobacco pipe on a field of tannish gray
A rather quirky caption below the pipe of brownish wood
"Ceci n'est pas une pipe", it read... Had I misunderstood?
"Ceci n'est pas une pipe" in French means "This is not a pipe"
It sure looked like Daddy's briar to me, and of the usual type
There must be a hidden meaning, that clods like me don't get
Perhaps if I would cross my eyes, I'd see a cigarette
I moved up close, I crossed my eyes, then backed across the way
I looked for occult images, but much to my dismay
It still appeared to be a pipe to me... How could I be misled?
Then a kindly docent smiled at me and this is what he said:
"Sometimes artists fool your eye and sometimes fool your mind
Our brains are tooled for symbols, the way that we're designed."
He pulled out a pipe and said: "Magritte just had his fun.
This one here's an actual pipe, and that's an image of one."
March 11, 2013
Click "About this poem" above the title to see an image of the painting.