Jamaica Osorio: A Voice For Hawaii, And Many Others.

Jamaica Osorio has given her mission a voice. It’s the voice of a strong, determined Hawaiian. Growing up on Oahu, Osorio was sent to Hawaiian Immersion School. Now, an internationally recognized Hawaiian poet, Osorio is a senior at Stanford Univeristy, and hopes to continue her education in Law school after graduation in 2012. Slam Poetry is a genre of poetry where participants act out their poems using physical gestures and vocal manipulation, and is often held in competitive settings. As a senior in high school, Osorio was featured on an HBO documentary which followed her and fellow team mates as they prepared for the Brave New Voices slam poetry competition. In one of her poems, Straight Jacket, Osorio addresses the feelings she had during the begining of her time at Stanford University. The poem, as she says, is about love and how no one has the right to tell her who to love. In the caption of a YouTube video of Osorio performing her poem Straight Jacket at the Great New Voices competition she talks about the poem and some of the feelings she had just before presenting. It is a great look into the mind of this brilliant poet.
Straight Jacket is a poem i wrote after moving to California expecting to be embraced by the gay community but instead while attending school i felt very isolated and boxed away from everyone. i just remember while walking up to stage before i did this poem thinking “what if my father dies before ever seeing me get married”… there are real life consequences to the governments actions. its disgusting that after all this country and world has gone through because of hate that we haven’t yet learned to love and embrace…. More recently, Osorio made a trip to her home state to participate in a night of cultural awareness on Molokai.  The event, called Hawaiian Mana’o, also featured other Hawaiian artists; poets, dancers, story tellers, and artists. Osorio has become a voice for Hawaii, as well as many others.

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