aaduna in exile 2021-22 – Sweet


When Sweet is More than Sweet 

American phraseology is filled with multiple uses of the word “sweet.” For African Americans that word is reminiscent of intriguing times and experiences. Sweet potato pie, a southern Black food staple dating back to colonial times has been a mainstay for many generations, whose descendants  can easily recall how the aroma of that particular pie filtered through a home and out into the neighborhood. And made mouths long for a taste. 

Marvin Gaye’s 1964 song “How Sweet It is To Be Loved By You” was a major hit that was  penned by Motown songwriters, Holland-Dozier-Holland; it was re-recorded by Junior Walker and the All-Stars in 1966 and was a major re-make and hit for James Taylor in 1975. “How Sweet…”was recorded many other artists. And who can forget Jackie Gleason who coined the phrase “How sweet it is.”  And no mention of “sweet” can ignore Melvin Van Peeble’s classic 1971 film, Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song.”  

So, while there are numerous musical phrases using “sweet” such as 1974’s classic “Home Sweet Home Alabama” by southern rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd and “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This,) a 1983 hit for the Eurythmics, what does “sweet” have to do with aaduna? 

Go back to the title of this blog, “When Sweet is More than Sweet.” 

aaduna is proud to present in the winter 2021-22 issue the fiction of Se’lika Maria Sweet. 

“Guard Man,” “Outback Rankin County,” and “Run White Girl Run” will certify her place as a writer of intriguing themes. So, to give you “taste”of Sweet, here is a brief excerpt from “Guard Man”

I had been in New Orleans two days and already was hanging out in the historic place on the Mississippi River in southern Louisiana. The weather was hot and humid. I wore shorts, tube tops, flip flops and half-dressed like most people in the Crescent City. I got off the bus, which stopped in front of the campus, that June evening after touring the French Quarters with my roommate. I walked onto the campus, and it started.

"In here quick," the Guard Man said as he popped up looking out the window. “It’s going to be all right.”

We ran into the white guardhouse, thinking we were in danger. After we entered, he nervously locked the door. It seemed he was hiding us. He was an average-looking light brown-skinned man, 6' and mid afro that looked like he had not seen a barber in years. His eyes were big, wide and he seldom blinked.

More of Sweet will come in aaduna’s mid-February 2022 issue.


Se’lika Maria Sweet, M.D (Photo Provided)

Se’lika Maria Sweet, M.D is a family physician and writer. Dr. Sweet is an eighth generation Mississippian and is presently authoring a book on Flint Goodridge Hospital, which was owned by her alma mater, Dillard University in New Orleans, Louisiana.


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