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Seamus Heaney 13 April 1939 – 30 August 2013

Mid-Term Break I sat all morning in the college sick bay Counting bells knelling classes to a close. At two o'clock our neighbors drove me home. In the porch I met my father crying-- He had always taken funerals in his stride-- And Big Jim Evans saying it was a hard blow. The baby cooed and laughed and rocked the pram When I came in, and I was embarrassed By old men standing up to shake my hand And tell me ...

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Street musicians around the world sing Otis Redding

This just seemed like a good way to start a Friday. Street musicians from America, Italy, Brazil and Japan accompany each other in this fantastic version of Dock of the Bay ... [video width="600" id="Es3Vsfzdr14" type="youtube"] ...

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‘You’re All Just Jealous of My Jetpacks’ by Tom Gauld

If you're not already a fan of Tom Gauld's cartoons in The Guardian here's a small selection to convince you. He'll be at this year's Edinburgh International Book Festival on 23 August. In April he published a book of the cartoons, You're All Just Jealous of My Jetpacks, available from The Guardian bookshop. ...

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Deep Fried Film Festival starts this weekend in Coatbridge

Deep Fried Film - the only international film festival in Coatbridge - gets underway this Saturday 10 August and continues until  17 August. It kicks off with children's films on the Saturday afternoon and ends with an awards ceremony followed by a big party and a chance to mingle with the film makers. There will also be  some stand up comedy, music and art. The amount raised for charity - the festival is a ...

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Hendrick’s Carnival of Knowledge comes to Edinburgh

Why let death get in the way of a good conversation? is one of the events at  Hendrick's Carnival of Knowledge that is travelling to One Royal Circus as part of the Edinburgh Fringe, 8-11 August.  An evening of communicating with the other side is hosted by The Last Tuesday Society and Professor Richard Wiseman - don't miss a chance to speak to Arthur Conan Doyle and Oscar Wilde as tables wobble and levitat ...

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Tell your story at The Real Bothy Project in Fife

Claire Lamond, Andrew Lennie and Alan Grieve are the artists behind the Real Bothy Project. Travelling through Fife this summer, they have been inviting people of all ages to ‘grab a bothy brew and join in the bothy banter’, continuing a long association of artists with the wild shelters of Scotland. They say, 'traditionally, the bothy is understood as an egalitarian environment, a space for exchange. a pla ...

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Win tickets to Hendrick’s Carnival of Knowledge in Edinburgh

Hendrick's Gin is offering Avocado Sweet readers the chance to win 2 pairs of tickets to Bibliotherapy Live! at the Hendrick's Carnival of Knowledge, part of this year's Edinburgh Fringe. Each ticket includes one Hendrick's Gin cocktail and the event will be held at the stylish boutique B&B, 1 Royal Circus. The event is on Thursday 8 August and Rowan Pelling (left) will be analysed live on stage by Ella ...

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Alan Bissett: on Scotland and the culture of independence

Award winning novelist Alan Bissett is a passionate 'yes' when it comes to independence for Scotland. In this exclusive interview for Avocado Sweet, he discusses the impact independence may have on the country's culture. You can see Bissett perform his one man show - Ban this Filth  - at the Scottish Storytelling Centre as part of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe from 1 to 11 August.  Does Scotland have a dist ...

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Aberdour Festival turns 30: Beach volleyball, a regatta and Jo Caulfield

There can't be many Scottish festivals that have beach volleyball in their programme. Aberdour in Fife does, along with a regatta, Jo Caulfield and a great festival bake off hosted by Susan Rae, Radio 4 and judged by last year's Great British Bake Off winner, John Whaite and Aberdour's own baker, Mrs Lonie. The festival also has its own version of the BAFTAs, Brilliant Aberdour Film Talent Awards. Short fil ...

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Sylvia Plath reads…

These recordings of American poet Sylvia Plath were made in late 1962, just a few months before she died. In them she reads from Ariel, the collection she left on the kitchen table to be found with her body. It is fascinating to hear her deliver, with her clipped New England vowels, the exact internal rhymes and rhythms she must have intended for each poem. She sounds mature - not at all girlish - and confi ...

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