BEST PLACE TO COM­MUNE WITH THE DEAD

NOW Magazine - Best of Toronto - - City Scape -

NE­CROP­O­LIS CEME­TERY 200 Winch­ester The Vic­to­rian Gothic peak that marks the en­trance­way to the city’s old­est ceme­tery casts an eerie shadow. And the grave­stones of the 36,000 souls buried here are lit­er­ally ev­ery­where – perched pre­car­i­ously on what were once the banks of the Don, scat­tered in tiny vales hid­den be­hind trees and in row upon row in cor­ners over­grown with grass. Vis­i­tors must al­ways watch their step lest they in­ad­ver­tently trip and stir the souls of the an­cients. In­deed, the lumps that have re­grown over limbs cut down by wind or light­ning make faces in the dark. Even in the clear light of a beau­ti­ful day, leaves twirl to the ground from the maples above as if be­ing called by the dead to dance. Per­haps it’s be­cause the ghosts of too many chil­dren who died too young lie here, or the rest­less souls of those wrong­fully hanged for their part in the MacKenzie re­bel­lion, but at the Ne­crop­o­lis not all the de­parted rest in peace.

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