Blue Smoke: Intimate Disclosures in Poetry & Prose

Blue Smoke: Intimate Disclosures in Poetry & Prose

by Craig A. Combs


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About the Book

Blue Smoke is an offbeat narrative on weathering the whims of the daily unknown. Employing essay and verse, it’s ripe with chronicles of scarcity, resentment, and consequence; loss of faith and pride reclaimed; innocence stolen and the pursuit of trust denied.

It is an exercise in decoding life’s ironies and deeply rooted superstitions—too long and too tightly held—that exposes our laughable attempts to outrun the curveballs thrown at us by our greatest adversary, ourselves. The book unfolds deliberately, page by page, unveiling a living patchwork that blends artistic acquaintance with surgical intent.

This multi-genre collection is not just about falling down or nursing our wounds, but also about how we come to accept the unseen forces, lurking within and without, that so often compel us to defy our immediate interests for wild schemes of heroism and bold-faced retreat alike.

Blue Smoke urges us to ditch the tedium of indecision in favor of life’s hidden mystery—regardless of inconvenient outcomes or unintended truth—while its penetrating confessions rage against the drone of disappointment with a smile and the certitude a new day will dawn.

—Craig A. Combs - Ypsilanti, Michigan, 2015


I appreciate what Craig Combs has attempted in Blue Smoke—to construct an array of poems and essays whose themes and concerns seem so braided together and which criss-cross and comment on one another. He’s even gone so far as to frame his “medley” and to explain how the parts fit together, even what they point to.
—Phillip Arrington, author of The Serpent’s Sage

In Blue Smoke, Craig Combs offers readers an inspiring assortment of poetry and prose that acknowledges both the beauty and the difficulty of this world. Combs’ writing is a full-hearted reminder that even though we come from different places, we all have the same need to be held with care and compassion.
—Julie Babcock, author of Autoplay

In this cross-genre collection, Craig Combs deftly balances head and heart, while expressing the maturity, wisdom and self-awareness of a person who’s done some living and who knows what he thinks and feels about these many life experiences. His writing is both articulate and emotionally resonant.
—John F. Buckley, co-author of Yankee Broadcast Network

Powerfully moving, introspective, humorous, unpretentious, and “real.” And by no coincidence, just like the poet himself.
—R.J. Fox, author of Love and Vodka


About the Author

Since the publication of his first poetry collection in 2011, Taking Tea in the Black Rose: Singing Through the Shadows Until We’re Dancing in the Light, Michigan-born author, Craig A. Combs, has stylized his creative writing repertoire with pioneering ideas, using line and prose, that leave his readers with an equal sense of tenderness and childlike fascination.

Independent to the core, this writer pursues each new curiosity with transparency as his prize, while sapping his sustenance from life’s hardships without apology or remorse.

Combs is a resident of Ypsilanti, Michigan, where he produces and promotes music and spoken word variety shows under his own Sacred Star Productions moniker, collaborating with scores of regional artists across multiple genres and social demographics. His video library can be found at

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781478765394
Publisher: Outskirts Press, Inc.
Publication date: 09/26/2015
Pages: 120
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.25(d)

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