New Book Collects Jim Morrison’s Poetry, Journals and Lyrics
Nearly 600 pages of writings by late Doors singer Jim Morrison will be published on June 8, the most extensive collection of his words.
The Collected Works of Jim Morrison: Poetry, Journals, Transcripts and Lyrics, which has been put together with the assistance of his estate, will feature both previously published work as well as never-before-seen material, including unrecorded song lyrics, poetry, personal notebook entries, drawings, photos and more.
Particularly noteworthy are the written details from some of Morrison's most turbulent and mysterious years. Recently discovered notebooks reveal his musings from his 1970 trial in Miami, in which he was sentenced on obscenity and profanity charges. Also included is what is believed to be his final collection of writings from Paris in 1971, not long before his death at age 27.
For cinephiles, there's a treatment of The Hitchhiker, a movie endeavor that was never fully produced, though parts were gathered in HWY: An American Pastoral, a 1970 short film in which Morrison stars as a murderous drifter. In a 1971 interview with Ben-Fong Torres, the singer deemed the project as "more of an exercise for me and a warm-up for something bigger."
Fifty years on from his death, the collection appears to be a return to the initial roots of Morrison, who noted his desire to be a writer more than any other kind of creator. In 1969, the poet-turned-rock-star was asked by Rolling Stone if he envisioned himself gravitating more toward print writing as opposed to singing. “That’s my greatest hope," he said. "That’s always been my dream.”
"I think around the fifth or sixth grade I wrote a poem called 'The Pony Express,'" reads an excerpt on the official Jim Morrison website, taken from a 1969 interview with Jerry Hopkins. "It was one of those ballad-type poems. I never could get it together, though. I always wanted to write, but I always figured it’d be no good unless somehow the hand just took the pen and started moving without me really having anything to do with it.
"I kept a lot of note books through high school and college and then when I left school for some dumb reason — maybe it was wise — I threw them all away. There’s nothing I can think of I’d rather have in my possession right now than those two or three lost notebooks."
Decades later, those lost works will finally see the light of day.