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Shin Yu Pai

Host, Ten Thousand Things


Shin Yu Pai [pronounced Shin Yee Pie] is the current Civic Poet for The City of Seattle (2023-24) and host of KUOW's podcast Ten Thousand Things (formerly The Blue Suit). Shin Yu is a 2022 Artist Trust Fellow and was shortlisted for a 2014 Stranger Genius in Literature. She is the author of eleven books of poetry, including most recently Virga (Empty Bowl, 2021). From 2015 to 2017, she served as the fourth Poet Laureate of the City of Redmond. Her essays and nonfiction writing have appeared in Atlas Obscura, NY Times, Tricycle, YES! Magazine, The Rumpus, Seattle Met, Zocalo Public Square, Gastronomica, City Arts, The Stranger, South Seattle Emerald, International Examiner, Ballard News-Tribune, Seattle’s Child, Seattle Globalist, and ParentMap. Shin Yu’s work has appeared in publications throughout the U.S., Japan, China, Taiwan, The United Kingdom, and Canada. She is represented by Tyler Tsay at The Speakeasy Project.


  • Ten Thousand Things - Episode 1 Graphic
    Arts & Life

    A name is a thing that is changeable

    When we come into this world we are given a name. It is etched in ink on our birth certificate, pasted onto our cubbies in pre-school, and signed onto paper to acknowledge our union with a beloved. A name has power.

  • caption: Shoes Off, A Sexy Asians Podcast
    Arts & Life

    'Ten Thousand Things' recommends 'Shoes Off'

    We want to introduce you to a new podcast you may like, "Shoes Off." Join hosts Susie An and Esther Yoon-Ji Kang as they hang out with badass Asians and ask them to redefine “sexy” on their own terms.

  • caption: Asian Bike Club is now Ampersand Bikes Club
    Arts & Life

    A bike builds a bridge

    Anti-Asian hate crimes spiked during the Covid-19 pandemic. And then the Atlanta spa shooting scarred a community already suffering.

  • caption: Shawn Wong
    Arts & Life

    A book becomes a movement

    Shawn Wong discovered the first Japanese American novel, No-No Boy, at a used bookstore for 50 cents, after being told by his English professors that Asian American literature didn’t exist.

  • JizuBodhisattva.png
    Arts & Life

    A Jizo Bodhisattva cradles grief

    During the mizu kuyo ritual for pregnancy loss, a small Jizo Bodhisattva statue enshrines ceremonial remains of a lost child. Following Shin Yu’s miscarriage in 2012, she had a mizu kuyo ceremony to process her grief.

  • caption: Donna reads Ana's letter to the future.
    Arts & Life

    A time capsule returns

    On the eve of selling her family’s house, Donna Miscolta’s daughter had a special request: Go to the stairwell and pull back the loose board on the bottom step.

  • caption: Eason Yang
    Arts & Life

    A resume loses its shine

    Eason Yang was on an ambitious career trajectory, helping tech companies like Uber change the world. Until he got cancer.