Sometimes, even if it isn’t pretty, Toronto’s graffiti can really be beautiful. After a long time in darkness, the Bloor subway comes outside between Dundas West and Runnymede stations. If you’re heading westbound, this crude piece of graffiti on the very top of the back of an auto shop – “MORGAN AND ALISON ARE IN L” – is the one that you might notice first as you leave Dundas West.
For some reason, something about the abrupt end of it got me and still gets me. It’s sad and funny at the same time: someone’s gone to all this effort to show the entire city how much they love someone, only to see the key word (LOVE, of course) painted over. When I was a kid, I always wondered how Morgan and Alison were doing. I wondered why they didn’t come back to reclaim their love. I didn’t understand, at the time, that they may not have felt the same way anymore.
When I went to take photos of the tag, I didn’t even realize that all along the bottom of the building (which also happens to be beside the TTC’s Keele Metropass parking lot) was much more detailed and elaborate graffiti, some really beautiful stuff. I’ve probably gone by the wall a thousand times, at least, but I’d never noticed – I was always busy looking for Morgan and Alison.
I thought I was the only one who ever noticed the line but almost everyone I’ve showed this photo to knows what I’m talking about. That’s Toronto for you; just when you think you’ve found something that’s yours, you find out everyone else knows about it. At least Morgan and Alison can still lay claim to it.