Francis Combes

Francis Combes was born in 1953 in Marvejols in France. After his childhood, he moved with his family in Aubervilliers, on the outskirts Parisian, where he currently lives with his wife, the journalist Patricia Latour. He holds a degree in Computer Science and studied oriental languages (Russian, Chinese and Hungarian). Since very young he committed with politics: in 1968 he joined the Communist Youth, movement in which he held various responsibilities. From 1975 to 1981 he was national secretary of the Union of Communist Students (UEC) and member of the national secretariat MJCF (Communist Youth Movement of France). From 1979 to 1985, he was elected Councillor of the Val-d’Oise, being the youngest General Counsel of France at that time. He is a member of the French Communist Party since 1970 and was a founder of the Communist Left and “Le Manifeste” newspaper. From 1981 to 1992 he was a member of the editorial board of the journal “Europe” and then he served as literary director at Messidor editions. In 1993, he founded “Le Temps des Cerises” editions; engaged in supporting independent publishers, he is also among the founders of the association “L’Autre Livre” and currently its president. As a poet, he has published fifteen collections as well as several anthologies and books of prose. His poems have been translated into several languages. As a literary translator, he translated into French Maïakovski, Heine, Brecht, Attila Jozsef, as well as American poets like Eliot Katz and Jack Hirschman. For fifteen years he took part, together with the poet Gérard Cartier, to the project “billboards poetic” in the Paris metro. He has worked with various musicians (especially with the Chilean composer Sergio Ortega) and wrote several songs, opera librettos and pièces that were brought on stage. Engaged in social and political life, he is also a journalist, critic and essayist.

Poetry works:

  • Apprentis du printemps, EFR, 1980
  • L’Amour, la marguerite et l’ordinateur, Messidor, collection La petite Sirène, 1983
  • Cévennes, ou Le ciel n’est pas à vendre, Ipomée, collection Tadorne, 1986 (Prix RTL de poésie)
  • Les Petites leçons de choses, collection Commune, trois éditions, (1987, 1995, 1997)
  • La Dame de la Tour Eiffel, avec une sérigraphie de François Ferret, Contrastes, 1989
  • Au Vert-Galant jeté en Seine, Europe / Poésie, 1991
  • La Ballade du cœur insoumis, La Malle d’aurore, 1996
  • La Fabrique du bonheur, Les Écrits des Forges / Le dé bleu, 2000
  • Cause commune, Le Temps des Cerises (trois éditions) (2003, 2005, 2008)
  • Le Cahier bleu de Chine, collection Commune, 2005
  • La Ballade d’Aubervilliers, Dialectique communication / Le Temps des Cerises, 2007
  • La Clef du monde est dans l’entrée à gauche, Le Temps des Cerises, 2008
  • Le vin des hirondelles, Le Petit Pavé, 2011