Jim Morrison’s poetry filtered into my world through snippets of songs I heard on the radio as a teenager—and once in a remote hostel in Northern England, at breakfast time.
I remember thinking that time in the hostel, while getting ready for a grueling day’s hike through the fells, that The Doors’ song, “Riders On the Storm,” was a somewhat heavy selection for seven in the morning. But as it turned out, I ended up trudging through a heavy storm all that day, so it was perhaps quite fitting.
A few years later, I began noticing connections between Jim Morrison’s words and those of other poets I admire.
Morrison, lead singer of the iconic group The Doors and reportedly a voracious reader, was influenced by thinkers like Friedrich Nietzsche, Arthur Rimbaud, Jack Kerouac, William Blake and Charles Baudelaire, among others. It made sense that I was attracted to Morrison’s words, as it appeared that our reading list was rather similar.
Later I discovered “Wilderness: The Lost Writings of Jim Morrison, Volume 1,” and here I found more treasures.
What I love most about the words of Jim Morrison is the way he penetrates the human condition. He states things that we all think about, but sometimes are afraid to voice out-loud. At once wise and naïve, Morrison’s poetry and lyrics are optimistic but subtly dark, and always they evoke a love of authenticity.
“There are things known, and there are things unknown, and in between are the doors.” ~ Jim Morrison
I find it interesting that the name for the group The Doors comes from the title of Aldous Huxley’s book, “The Doors of Perception.” Huxley’s title was a quotation from William Blake’s “The Marriage of Heaven and Hell,” where Blake wrote:
“If the doors of perception were cleansed, everything would appear to man as it is, infinite.”
William Blake, Jim Morrison and I agree on this:
“Blake said that the body was the soul’s prison, unless the five senses are fully developed and open. He considered the senses the ‘windows of the soul.’ When sex involves all the senses intensely, it can be like a mystical experience.” ~ Jim Morrison
In a constant search for my own emancipation from the body’s limitations, I often would drift towards Blake and Nietzsche for pearls of wisdom. As a student of human sexuality, Jim Morrison’s quote appeals to my belief that sex is a spiritual experience. And it is true, the more we open ourselves to senses other than touch, we can find nirvana during erotic encounters.