Jim Morrison poem found in Paris hotel room being auctioned

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Jim Morrison - Mini Biography



NEW YORK (AP) — A handwritten poem by Jim Morrison found among his possessions in the Paris hotel where he died in 1971 ends with the line "Last words, Last words out."

Written on the last page torn out of a thick notebook, the double-sided document is the highlight of an online auction that went live Thursday. Auctioneer Paddle8 said bidding through June 25 is expected to reach between $60,000 and $80,000.

The lead singer and songwriter of the 1960s rock group the Doors died at age 27. The exact cause of death was never determined and speculation has abounded.

Whether the poem's words were a foretelling of what was to come is anyone's guess. The flamboyant rocker famous for such iconic tunes as "Light My Fire," ''L.A. Woman" and "Riders on the Storm" was known for his darkly poetic lyrics and alcohol and drug use.

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Jim Morrison poem found in Paris hotel room being auctioned
** FILE ** The late Jim Morrison of the rock group "The Doors" is shown in this undated photo. French radio personality Sam Bernett, whose French-language book is called "The End: Jim Morrison," claims Morrison died in a toilet stall of his nightclub, after what he believes was a heroin overdose. Bernett, who was in his early 20s when Morrison died in 1971, went on to become a prominent radio personality, rock biographer and a vice president of Disneyland Paris. Though he was pestered by reporters for years about rumors surrounding Morrison's death, he kept his story quiet until his wife suggested writing a book last year. (AP Photo/file)
LONDON - SEPTEMBER 03: Jim Morrison's last notebook - containing poems & a photograph of the singer is displayed at the Idea Generation Gallery on September 3, 2008 in London. The gallery will hold an auction of Rock and Roll memorabilia on September 4 in London. The notebook is valued at ?80-100,000. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 12: Personal note books and some of the last pictures of The Doors lead singer Jim Morrison are displayed at the Park Avenue Armory which is hosting the New York Antiquarian Book Fair on April 12, 2013 in New York City. This years fair, the 53rd year, features over 200 exhibitors of rare books, maps, manuscripts and ephemera.The New York Antiquarian Book Fair runs from April 11 through 14. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
(FILES) - Photo taken on December 8, 2003 in Paris shows photographs and flowers on the grave of Jim Morrison at Pere Lachaise cemetery. It will be 40 years on July 3, 2011 since Jim Morrison was found dead in a bathtub in his Paris apartment, but a visit to his grave finds the cult of the lizard king as alive as ever. That Pere Lachaise is reputedly the most-visited cemetery in the world is due in no small part to the crowds that flock every day to visit Morrison's flower-strewn gravestone. AFP PHOTO / JOEL ROBINE (Photo credit should read JOEL ROBINE/AFP/Getty Images)
A fan lays flowers on the tomb of rock musician Jim Morrison 08 December 1993 at the Pere Lachaise cemetery in Paris, on the anniversary of the singer's 50th birthday. Morrison, who was the lead singer for the rock group The Doors, died 03 July 1971. (Photo credit should read GERARD FOUET/AFP/Getty Images)
3rd September 1968: American psychedelic rock band, The Doors during a press conference at Heathrow Airport, London (left to right); drummer John Densmore, keyboard player Ray Mansarek, vocalist Jim Morrison (1943 - 1971) and guitarist Robby Krieger. (Photo by Central Press/Getty Images)
An image of The Doors' frontman Jim Morrison is seen along with what is believed to be his last notebook, during a presentation in London, Wednesday Sept. 3, 2008. The 20-page spiral notebook called 'Last Notebook - Paris 1971' contains lyrics, poetry and musings and was given by Morrison to a friend. It will be auctioned on Sept. 4 and is estimated to fetch 80,000-100,000 pounds (US$143,000-$179,000; 98,500-123,000euro). (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
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"He was kind of obsessed" by the theme of death from the very first album, said Simeon Lipman, a specialist who works on Paddle8's "Legendary" series of music memorabilia auctions.

"Obviously, we don't know if it's the last thing he ever wrote ... but it was among the last things he ever wrote — certainly."

The notebook was originally intact and then broken apart and sold in pieces over several years, he said. The page being sold is numbered but not dated.

The "Last Words" poem, which also contains the line "I have drunk the drug of forgetfulness," appears on page 152. The reverse, page 151, contains another poem — or possibly the start of the same poem — beginning with "Well, I'm a Soul Cobra Man" — another favorite theme of the rocker who liked wearing snakeskin and who sang "I'm the Crawlin' King snake."

"What stands out is the fact that the one on page 152 was indeed the last page of the notebook," said Lipman. "I actually saw the notebook when it was intact years ago and I remember seeing that last page and those last words and thinking, 'Wow, this is pretty powerful stuff.'"

"His writings can be taken so many different ways. Personally I like to visualize what he's saying. ... That's what makes his songs and poems so relevant today because people can envision them," he added.

The notebook the page came from was found inside Morrison's "Fascination Trunk," which contained other personal belongings including books and other notebooks.

Morrison moved to Paris in 1971 to take a break from performing and to focus on his writing. He died a few months later. French police ruled out foul play and an autopsy was never performed.

Morrison's grave in Paris attracts tourists from around the world.

"He is the prototype of that kind of brooding, brilliant rock star," said Lipman. "Because he died young, he's timeless like James Dean and Marilyn Monroe."

What makes the document special is that it "combines a lot of different threads," he said. It's written in Morrison's own hand, deals with the themes of death and snakes, and was found in the hotel where he died.

Paddle8 is a four-year-old company that targets new and veteran collectors with items of contemporary art, design and memorabilia estimated at $100,000 and under.

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