My new book of poems/essays from Coffee House Press, Unbearable Splendor, is available!
Praise for Unbearable Splendor
“I’ve long thought that Sun Yung Shin is writing some of the most powerful poetry around.” —Eileen Verbs Books, review
“To graph the immigrant, the exile and ‘pseudo-exile,’ as ‘a kind of star.’ To perform childhood. ‘Descent upon descent.’ To write on ‘paper soaked in milk.’ Unbearable Splendor is a book like this, that is this: the opposite or near-far of home. What is the difference between a guest and a ghost? What will you feed them in turn? I was profoundly moved by the questions and deep bits of feeling in this gorgeous, sensing work, and am honored to write in support of its extraordinary and brilliant writer, Sun Yung Shin.” —Bhanu Kapil
“In Unbearable Splendor, Sun Yung Shin sticks a pin directly into the heart of who we are to reveal that a person is a mystery without beginning or end, borders or documents, complicated by robotics and astrophysics, arrivals and departures, myth and rewriting. A person is divided into multiple, complicated selves, as various and complex as the forms and approaches she employs in these poetic essays. To read Shin’s work is to marvel at a rosebud’s concealed and silent core and to slowly witness its elegant blooming. It is a delicate and majestic show.”—Jenny Boully
“Unbearable Splendor is a dazzling collage of biophysical metamorphoses, wherein the ‘I’ atomizes into multiple and self-replicating new mythologies of what constitutes an authentic being. ‘I didn’t know I wasn’t human. My past was invented, implanted, and accepted. I’m more real than you are because I know I’m not real.’ In our vast expanse, where ‘every species is transitional,’ Shin’s lyricism, erudition, and tonal command of loss and indignation harmonize into a singular nucleus that hums and pulsates through each of these wondrous poetic meditations.”—Ed Bok Lee