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my karma

oh, you are my karma
the epiphany of doubt
you came dressed in my apologies
and carrying a sword
you are the vengeance of my weakness
who will not parlay or retreat
you swing your soft indifference
at my soul and i fall, hard

oh, you are my karma,
the dissolution of my peace
with a soul that shines like mirrors
and the fingers of a thief
and when i finally remembered
what had sent me into hiding
i swallowed words like aspirin
and washed them down with grief

oh, you are my karma,
you are a thing i can’t unsee
the undoing of my stitches
and the bleeding of my scar
you are each tiny evil secret
and the tinier grey lies
and every drink and every boy
and every seedy bar

oh, you are my karma
it is a brittle, brutal blow
that what started out in wonder
has me trying to forget
but this lesson won’t go quietly
won’t lie down and hold its tongue
i would strangle it with poetry
and drown it in regret

oh, you are my karma
and the laughter of the norns
the surrendering to emptiness
and all we’ll never know
you, you are my karma
nothing more, and nothing less
you are the end of this black coda
you are the gates of horn and ivory
you are the end and the beginning
and the reason i must go

l.t. dougherty 2015

ephemera / snow

new work at cafe pyrus

february 1-28, 2015


i’ll be informally hanging out there february 8 from 3 pm – 6 pm. come have coffee with me.

ephemera / snow new work at cafe pyrus          february 1-28, 2014

ephemera / snow
new work at cafe pyrus february 1-28, 2014


January 2015

what’s new:

  • more classes will be coming up at the button factory. details to follow


  • a show of new work at cafe pyrus in kitchener. details to follow

artisan zone

i will be having pieces from the satellite series at artisan zone in downtown kitchener for the next 3 months. all works there are for sale, and they have a large number of really excellent local artists on their walls, as well as really intriguing, well made handmade crafts (wooden watches, anyone?) check out the store, and say hi to martin and amy!

satellite draw!

i was having a draw for a piece from my satellite work on facebook, and the lucky winners are paul ducharme, and jane whittlesey.  congratulations to both of you!

and thank you to everyone who participated in the contest, and left such fantastic comments on my FB page and here on my website. feedback is a really wonderful thing to artists 🙂

October 2013

well, what hasn’t happened? if you’re reading this, then you’ve found my brand new webpage.  i revamped the whole thing, and also reworked a lot of images, to try to give a better idea of what many of the older pieces look like. unfortunately, some images may still be a bit fuzzy, as the only images i have of some of these works are lower quality (i had a drive crash a few years ago, and lost about 1o years worth of images).  so, brand spanking new website.

i’ve done a few shows since my last news post as well, most notably, BOX 11.  i’ve also joined a new studio (key and compass studio went the way of a bad landlord), at CEI studios, on erb street in waterloo, and have been taking part in open houses there this year.  fun bunch of people there, and great to work with.

i’ve actually got a solo exhibition coming up this month at CEI studios called ‘incidental orphans‘, which is a survey of 20 years of myth cabinets and other works.  none of these works have shown in the KW area ever, and most of them haven’t seen the light of day since 2003.  so if you’ve ever wondered what these things look like in real life, or if you’d like to revisit some of my older work, this would be the time to come out to a show.

i will also be exhibiting a few of the ‘satellite’ series in november at Artisan Zone, on king st. w. in kitchener, and those will be there until january.

there is also one last CEI studios show and sale for the year coming up in november.  check out the slider on my homepage for more details. there are some very good artists in these shows, and it’s a great opportunity to come out and see where we work and talk to us about what we do.

and, i need to do a few thank you’s. so, thank you to lionel, nik & melissa, kati, roz, nicole, and mom and dad. you know who you are, and why.

oh, and you can now link to me and facebook and twitter. share away!


bus boy

by the smell of wet rubber
and human bodies
i had a short-lived affair
with the back of your neck
it lasted 30 minutes
each way
on the days that i could make
my connection

i wrote poetry to
the arms of your glasses
before my morning coffee
saw your hair
in the summer grass
drought gold and curled
counted the colours of your shirts
my gaze followed you
across the parking lot
down the sidewalk
like a lost dog

only when i had carried
the note in my pocket
for three weeks
did i realize
this was a one way trip
and when the students returned
a half hour earlier
so i could miss

your smile

l.t. dougherty 2012


I wanted to write something worthy
of Don McKellar
but I lost my voice
somewhere between 1996
and this very moment
this very moment
this very moment
between the wanting and the doing
between the waking and the page
between the working and the 9 to 5
there fell a silence
and a distance
from words
and I was

I wanted to say something worthy
of Jane Siberry
but I lost my nerve
somewhere between the bare linoleum floor of 17
and this very moment
this very moment
this very moment
between the stockings and the carpet
between the branches and the leaves
between the technology and the passion
there fell a silence
and a weight
in my throat
and I was

I wanted to build something worthy
of Joseph Cornell
but I lost my sight
somewhere between the image of my incubus
and this very moment
this very moment
this very moment
between the wisdom and the fingers
between the meaning and the reconstruction
between the object and the longing
there fell a silence
and a stillness
in my hands
and I was
and I was
and I was
and I was …

l.t. dougherty 2007

lightning strikes

lightning struck the house next door
and no one lives there anymore.
cars keep crashing on my street
on sidewalks where the children meet
to play the games the stalkers like
and cars are stolen. so are bikes.
my neighbour had a heart attack
last wednesday, and they took him back
to the hospital where he spent his life
on the drugs that kept him from the knife.
the woman who lives two doors down
is missing. they think that she was drowned
in a boating accident on the lake.
i hope not, for her mother’s sake,
‘cos she has cancer of the liver.
another blow like this would shiver
her world, and break it down to dust.
i just don’t understand the lust
for tragedy most people seem
to want to have. it’s like some dream
where you’re standing out there at the edge
of the crowd and gawking into the wedge
like cars that slow at the accident site
and people who look as if they might
see a body part. or a splotch of blood.
i wonder, if they thought they could
would they take away a souvenir
so that they could say “hey, i was there,
right there, when they carried the bodies away.”
it’s kinda sick. but i can say
that i do not follow police cars.
i shy from the yellow tape that bars
the murder scene, the bombing ground.
there is enough tragedy around
without my being there to see
the things i know could happen to me.

l.t. dougherty 2002


this work is from the collection of poems called “living in epiphany” ©2000. to purchase a copy of the book, contact me by email.



it was a long way to hell,
my shoes split
my feet bleeding
but i’ve carried this torch
for years
for just

singing over the dark wires
i mourn the innocence i squandered, carrying bits of myself
in my pocket
my absolution
i would that i could lose
this treasure,
become again
a pauper
with the world
in my hand.

i call you mercury –
winged one,
closed within the box
i carry in my hand –
i would meet with you
in the palace of words,
give to you
no man’s bounty
my only hoard
one woman’s gift.

stranger, with all these people watching
consummation is the furthest
word from my lips;
scarred with lust
i sully the white bandages of my love
with false intentions.

I would take your face
within my palms
kiss your eyes of love
would it not be taken for weakness.

l.t. dougherty 1996