You can dress it up any way you want, and it’s still just cinnamon toast. This is what we had for supper in my family when we needed only a light supper, perhaps after enjoying a particularly large Sunday lunch. Other times we might have cheese toast, crackers with peanut butter and marshmallows melted on top, crackers crunched up in milk.

Maybe that’s what comfort food means–something simple couched in fond memories. Cinnamon toast makes no demands, offers no opinions, holds no expectations. It reminds me of sitting on the floor in front of the television to eat on a night when no one even cared if you bothered to use a plate. It probably doesn’t measure up to Michael Pollan’s Food Rules, but it’s alright. It’s just alright to me.

It was Keats who said this:

“Beauty is truth, truth beauty,” that is all
Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.

I don’t know what I need to know on this earth. The more I learn, the less I believe I might ever know what beauty is, what truth is, what any of us needs to know. My small nephew says that he says yuck a lot because “boys don’t understand the true meaning of beauty.” Who does? We only enjoy it or feel unnerved by it, each in our own turn and in our own way.

But cinnamon toast? That’s alright.

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