Tadeusz Korzeniewski has lived in Poland and then in America half a life in each.
He was born in the family of a WWII Home Army fighter. He studied electronics and philosophy, then joined the pre-Solidarity anti-Communist movement as a printer and a writer. His book "W Polsce" [In Poland] was published in the underground in 1981, and in England by an émigré publishing house. In 1984 it was awarded the Koscielski Prize. In 2010 it was republished in post-Communist Poland.
In 1981 he moved from Poland to France and then on to New York (1983), Montana (1992), and Seattle (1998), where he lives today. In New York he worked as a busboy at the Oak Room in the Plaza Hotel. His first job in Seattle was as an office furniture installer on the Microsoft campus in Redmond. Of the many gigs he has done for living in America, he most values his job as a security guard, guarding the Lansdowne portrait on its cross-country tour.
He began writing in English around 1990. Generous America responded right off with a string of fellowships: from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York Foundation for the Arts, the MacDowell Colony, and more. At first, he wrote about his country of origin. The trouble started when he turned to the American stuff and hit the third-rail issues, his game. He was still fairly naive about the country. He thought that now since he was in America he could publicize the truth as he pleased; that the contemporary American publishing world was just itching for it to be dropped on their desks. Boy he was in for a big surprise. To get ready to flatten that check, and like many before him, he hit the roads West. "To Wyoming" is the story of that trek.
The photo: in Seattle, 2004