All Hail the Lizard King: Our Favorite Jim Morrison Lyrics

Jim Morrison in 1970
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Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Close your eyes and think of The Doors. What are you seeing in your mind? Might be something from Joel Brodsky's "The Young Lion" photo shoot in 1967. You know the ones: Jim Morrison in black-and-white, shirtless but for a necklace, just staring into the camera lens. Morrison is arguably one of the most iconic frontmen in rock history - but The Doors' success wasn't solely predicated on looks - their mix of psychedelic musicianship and Jim's piercing lyrical poetry is what made them a multi-generational touchstone.

The Doors' most-streamed tracks have their share of lines - both accessible and infinitely profound - that have been scrawled on notebooks and cited as yearbook quotes for more than 50 years. Here's a look back at some of our favorites.

"Riders on the Storm" (L.A. Woman, 1971): One of the most enduring songs from the band's final album, this nonetheless served as a breaking point for longtime producer, who cut a version of this song before quitting their sessions - dismissing their work as "cocktail music."

Into this house, we're born
Into this world, we're thrown
Like a dog without a bone
An actor out on loan
Riders on the storm

WATCH: The Doors' New "Riders on the Storm" Video

"Light My Fire" (The Doors, 1967): Though the band's breakthrough, chart-topping single is immediately associated with Morrison (particularly that first verse they refused to censor for The Ed Sullivan Show), much of the song was written by Doors guitarist Robby Krieger. Jim did, however, pen the song's second verse - and kudos to him for keeping the rhyme scheme going.

The time to hesitate is through
No time to wallow in the mire
Try, now we can only lose
And our love become a funeral pyre

READ MORE: April 1967: The Doors Release "Light My Fire"

"Break On Through (to the Other Side)" (The Doors, 1967): The Doors famously named themselves after Aldous Huxley's The Doors of Perception, a memoir about hallucinogenics. As the opener to their first album, "Break On Through" is about as on-the-nose as you can get regarding Morrison's mission to find a higher or altogether different sort of consciousness.

You know the day destroys the night
Night divides the day
Tried to run, tried to hide
Break on through to the other side

READ MORE: January 1967: The Doors Release "The Doors"

"People Are Strange" (Strange Days, 1967): Famously coaxed from Morrison's pen after a walk in the Hollywood hills that chased away a bout of depression, "People Are Strange" became a countercultural anthem and helped prove, after their self-titled debut, that they had popular songs to spare.

People are strange when you're a stranger
Faces look ugly when you're alone
Women seem wicked when you're unwanted
Streets are uneven when you're down

READ MORE: A Sunset Helped The Doors Get "Strange"

"Roadhouse Blues" (Morrison Hotel, 1970): This back-to-basics rave-up isn't terribly groundbreaking by Doors standards, but it does feature a great lyric that encapsulates Morrison's fascination with the end of life. (Perhaps more notable is a phrase the intoxicated Morrison kept repeating during tracking of the song: "Money beats soul every time.")

Well, I woke up this morning and I got myself a beer
Well, I woke up this morning and I got myself a beer
The future's uncertain and the end is always near

"L.A. Woman" (L.A. Woman, 1971): The sprawling title track to the band's final album with Morrison on vocals isn't terribly profound, but you've got to respect Jim finding a solid anagram for his full name. Most of us can't!

Well, I just got into town about an hour ago
Took a look around, see which way the wind blow
Where the little girls in their Hollywood bungalows
Are you a lucky little lady in the City of Light?
Or just another lost angel?
City of Night, City of Night

READ MORE: The Doors Announce Deluxe Version of 'L.A. Woman'

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