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Read Jim Morrison’s Unreleased Autobiographic Poem ‘As I Look Back’

On Tuesday, June 8th, HarperCollins will publish The Collected Works of Jim Morrison: Poetry, Journals, Transcripts and Lyrics, a nearly 600-page, estate-approved collection that pulls together most of the Doors singer’s previously published work. It features everything from song lyrics to poetry, his posthumous poetry collections (Wilderness and The American Night), and a trove of unpublished handwritten material culled from 28 recently discovered notebooks.

Ahead of the book’s release, Rolling Stone is reprinting Morrison’s previously unreleased poem and the collection’s epilogue “As I Look Back,” an autobiographical piece written in verse form where the singer reminisces on his life and career, from his childhood in a military family to his days with the Doors to his dreams of a post-music life.

“The joy of performing has ended. Joy of films is pleasure of writing,” Morrison writes. “End w/fond good-bye & plans for future — Not an actor writer — filmmaker.”

The Collected Works of Jim Morrison: Poetry, Journals, Transcripts and Lyrics also boasts Morrison’s treatment for his unrealized film project The Hitchhiker, unseen family photographs, a transcript and pictures from Morrison’s final poetry recording session, and what are believed to be Morrison’s final writings — the contents of a Paris notebook from shortly before his 1971 death, “reproduced in full reading size.”

“As I Look Back” 

As I look back
over my life
I am struck by post cards Ruined snap shots
faded posters Of a time, I can’t recall

Before the beach, & birth,
was the home for travelers juvenile pen
a barracks in limbo of souls sans desire

They instill desire, day by day
& night too

Parachute birth
1st moments as war
1st days of pain

Struggle toward
consciousness

I am a Scot, or so
I’m told.
Really the heir of Mystery
Christians

The child of a
Military family . . . .

1st early memories
— attention-getting baby hide from mother
& elephant walk

back thru time to that child
again, staring rotten
thru the fence at the angels
next door

early memories
Asthma
Albuquerque lawn chairs & lock’d
in garage shelves w/girl
Beautiful Mexican girl – her mother
May dance – lost shoe
“Bad boy” – No, he’s a good boy
Think of Nothing – get what you want
The Mail Box

I initiated dirt-clod
fights in the canyon
& got bombed
in the stomach by rocks

Parachutes from
silk handkerchief

Kites

Snake in the Glen

“But they were picking
on the little kids”

I told stories & led
Treasure hunts for children

I led bicycle packs
chasing girls home from
school & delighted in
spanking them

I rebelled against church
after phases of
fervor

I curried favor in school
& attack’d the teachers

I was given a
desk in the corner

I was a fool
&
The smartest kid
in class

I created a mock treasure
Tried to get blood
To hide in woods near school
a monitor stopt me

Walks in D.C. in
Negro streets. The library
& book stores. Orange
brick in warm sun.
The books & poets magic

Then sex gives greater stimulation
Than you’ve ever known &
all peace & books lose their
charm & you are thrown
back on the eye of vision

chooks – depantsing – fights – Blue Bus etc.

Trying to have a ducktail

asserted myself by wit

I have tried to learn more about
homos but it’s not easy to discuss.

This is true about sex in general,
even more than philosophy or religion

Morés change – but not the mystery

History of Rock
coinciding w/my
adolescence

Came to LA
to Film School

I was never really
much of a doper

Acid popular, taken at least once or twice
by most everyone I knew
“grinding your wheels”

I can attest to its power. Saw many
astonishing things

Venice Summer

Drug Visions

Roof top songs

The early Notebook
Lost Notebooks

Watching Elvis on T.V.
humorous R & R riots

Name came 1st
Doors of Perception

Our lugubrious snaky
sound. Heavy as ice
as glass.

early struggles
&
humiliations

Thanks to the girls
who fed me.

Making Records

Elvis had sex – wise
mature voice at 19.

Mine still retains the
nasal whine of a
repressed adolescent
minor squeaks & furies
An interesting singer
at best – a scream
or a sick croon. Nothing
in-between.

It’s hard, this going back

Tropicana – naked
Acid. Christ, it’s
you, a female human.

Bo Diddley

Them

London Fog

Whisky – the girls cheated Box office

Love

ROAD DAYS

fear of Plane death

And night was what Night
should be

A girl, a bottle, & blessed sleep

Night of the End

— does no one understand

wreck studio

A natural leader, a poet,
a Shaman, w/the
soul of a clown.

My desire for family

What am I doing
in the Bull Ring
Arena
Every public figure
running for Leader

Spectators at the Tomb
-riot watchers

Fear of Eyes
Assassination

Artaud’s effort
to escape the collective
consciousness

I have ploughed
My seed thru the heart
of the nation.
Injected a germ in the psychic blood vein.

Now I embrace the poetry
of business & become – for
a time – a “Prince of Industry”

Had the disgrace
to be successful.
Back Door Man
Never tipped over into
revolutionary hysteria.

1st to bring normal
academic intelligence
to rock. Classical
American

I sit looking out
office window movie
The soft parade

Longhairs

bands over the city
gangs of outlaws

The meeting

Rid of managers & agents

The horror of business

Public self-analysis

The Problem of Money
guilt
do I deserve it?

Being drunk is a good disguise.

I drink so I
can talk to assholes.
This includes me.

Miami blew my confidence
but really I blew it
on purpose

The Decency Rally
“And away we go.”

The Jury – Sniffing the Witnesses
Trying the Devil in Florida

Fear of Jail
“No, you’d adjust.”

Relief of trial (bearable)
& pleasant life here.

each day is a drive thru history

regret for wasted nights
& wasted years
I pissed it all away
American Music

After 4 yrs. I’m left w/a
mind like a fuzzy hammer

Milton’s youth
— will I get a
chance to write my
Paradise Lost

To break w/past (wife
& partners) & define self.

The joy of performing has
ended.
Joy of films is pleasure
of writing.

End w/fond good-bye
& plans for future
–Not an actor
writer – filmmaker

Money from home
good luck
stay out of trouble

Which of my cellves
will be remember’d

Good-bye America
I loved you

collected works jim morrison

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