Books, Books, Books – Argyle Emporium

Last Sunday-week, Susan and I made a planned stop on the way to visiting her parents, who live 25 kilometres/15.5 miles outside of Goulburn. Goulburn is about one and three-quarter hours drive from our home.

The planned stop was at the Argyle Emporium, which is located opposite the railway line in Goulburn in an old Police Station. The Argyle Emporium has been a second-hand bookshop for 21 years and houses approximately 500,000 books. ‘Book Heaven’ for book-lovers!

This time we only spent just over an hour there and the good news for other book-lovers is that upon leaving there, I left 499, 496 books at the bookshop…. 🙂

The following ones I the books I purchased:

I love books on the Visual Arts that delve into how Artist expresses what they are feeling by using tools and techniques. This one features the thoughts of 20 famous artists. I love this book!

The second book I purchased is a collection that I have been wanting in my Poetry collection for some time but just hadn’t found the right one. Over 1,000 pages of Wordsworth delight!

The third book purchased that day was also Poetry. I enjoy buying collections of poetry. It is true that sometimes the collections overlap with other collections of poetry however, this hasn’t happened too much so far… This collection breaks up the poetry into subjects and includes over 90 Poets. The book was printed in 1957.

The last book purchased that day is from another ‘like’ of mine, and that is ‘tools and techniques that inspire creative writing’. I find them a fascinating read and, by the looks of this book, I won’t be disappointed.

4 more books from from the treasure-trove second-hand bookshop known as the Argyle Emporium, Goulburn, NSW. Australia. Some of the rooms are pictured below.

I can hardly wait until our next visit! 🙂

Written by David Johnson

17 August 2022

a growing collection…

I’ve been thinking about doing this type of post for awhile now and I have been trying to keep busy in light of the recent sadness that has befallen our Family this week.

My love for Poetry dates back to my school years and I always enjoyed borrowing Poetry books from the Library but often thought it would be great if I had some on my own bookshelf. I know I can look up the Internet at any time and view some but I’m also a ‘real book’ lover and love to curl up with one. I love the feel, the smell and conciseness of a single book in the hands.

That being said, I also have a couple of Poetry apps on my phone, ‘Poem Hunter’, which provides a daily Poem; ‘Famous Poetry’, which offers the Poetry of 36 different Poets. The apps are for those times when I cannot or do not have a book with me.

I also have a few books on the mechanics of Poetry and how to write them and I thought I would share a list of my Poetry books with you.

  • The Australian and Other Verses by W.H.Ogilvie
  • Poetical Works of Henry Lawson
  • Selected Poems of Adam Lindsay Gordon
  • The Collins Book of Australian Poetry
  • Collected Verse – John Manifold
  • The Poet’s Word – An Anthology of English Poetry
  • Chaucer to Gray – The Harvard Classics
  • The Golden Treasury of English Verse
  • Morla el Do (Tomorrow Will Do) – A Collection of Norfolk Island Poems
  • William Blake – Selected Poems
  • Quatrains of Omar Khayyam
  • The Poetical Works of John Keats
  • Poetical Works of Mrs Browning Volume 1
  • A Book of Poetry – Anthology of English Poetry (Textbook 1961)
  • Collected Shorter Poems 1930 -1944 of W.H.Auden
  • A.D.Hope – Selected Poems
  • Selected Poems & Letters of Emily Dickinson
  • Leaves From Australian Forests – Poetical Works of Henry Kendall
  • Yet More Comic & Curious Verse – The Penguin Poets
  • Enjoying Poetry 1 – Silver and Gold
  • Matthew Arnold – A Selection Of His Finest Poems
  • The English and Scottish Popular Ballads Volume 1
  • Seven Centuries of Poetry in English
  • The Great Modern Poets – An Anthology of the Best Poets & Poetry since 1900
  • Collected Poems of Henry Thoreau
  • James McCauley – Collected Poems 1936 – 1970
  • The Golden Book of Modern English Poetry – Everyman’s Library – 921
  • The Poet’s Pen – A Historical and Chronological Anthology – 13th to 20th Century
  • Walt Whitman – Leaves of Grass
  • Judith Wright – Collected Poems
  • Poems and Poets – David Aloian – Headmaster, Concord Academy (Textbook 1965)
  • Country Verse – 16th to 19th Century
  • Introduction to Poetry: British, American, Canadian
  • Writing and Enjoying Haiku – A Hands-on Guide
  • The Making of a Poem – A Norton Anthology of Poetic Forms
  • How To Read A Poem and Fall in Love with Poetry
  • Poetry: Tools & Techniques – A Practical Guide to Writing Engaging Poetry
  • Mary Oliver – A Poetry Handbook – A Prose Guide to Understanding & Writing Poetry

It would be very hard for me to pick out a favourite Poet or Poem so I’m not going to try. There are some of my favourite Poets missing from the list, though. Some are contained within the anthologies and it would be nice to have them in their own separate books. I know I can go out and purchase brand new books but I prefer to hunt out second-hand books as they have more character than a brand new book and there is something about ‘the hunt’ in a second-hand bookstore that makes it all the more exciting when you ‘uncover some book treasure…’.

Till next time!

Written by David Johnson

28 November 2021

Berkelouw’s book treasure

As mentioned in the previous post, last Sunday, my Wife and I were down at Berrima to celebrate the 27th anniversary of us going out to dinner for the first time.

One of the places we always go to is Berkelouw’s Book Barn which is located just outside Berrima on the Old Hume Highway. It holds a special place in our Hearts as we went there for the first time back on the 19 November 1994 and whilst browsing, Susan found a book called ‘The Drover’ which was outside the budget. She loved it but put it back on the shelf. I took a mental note of the book (no Smart phones back then to take a picture of it) and the next day, I rang Berkelouw’s and had them put the book aside. I picked it up the next weekend and gave it to Susan as a present. She was delighted and surprised! 🙂

Berkelouw’s used to have about 250,000 books but after diversification, they now have about 100,000 books. Still plenty to tantalise the avid bookworm.

Normally, we would be there for at least two hours, searching, uncovering and discovering book treasure but we both exceeded expectations and walked away with 11 books between us.

Here are my six below:

In all the years we have been going down there I have kept an eye out for writings of Henry David Thoreau and in consecutive years have picked up a book of his. Last year it was a book of his Poetry. It delights me to have picked up the book on some of his ‘meditations’.

I started reading the ‘Discworld’ series some time ago and have been keeping watch in second-hand bookstores so it was great to pick up another couple. 🙂

Am always on the lookout for Poetry books, especially anthologies and specific subject matter. I didn’t have any ‘humour-orientated’ Poetry so I was very pleased to add this to my collection. Anthologies are great, especially if like this one, there are a lot of Poets in it that I haven’t heard of. There a few Poems for each author so the book is a bit of a ‘taster’.

The final book to discuss is ‘New Worlds From Old’ which accompanied an exhibition of paintings some twenty years ago in Australia and the U.S.A. It has some wonderful plates of paintings from both American and Australian Landscape Artists from the 19th Century plus detailed information on the Artworks and the Artists themselves.

I’m looking forward this weekend and/or whenever I get the chance before to grab a cuppa and sit down to enjoy, particularly the Poetry, Painting and meditations books.

Till next time, booklovers!

Written by David Johnson

23 November 2021

A Trip To The Country – Part 2 – Book Treasure

In my last post (in this series), I mentioned that we stopped off in Boorowa, NSW for a spot of afternoon tea. Prior to our scrumptious Devonshire Tea, we popped into a ‘charity bookshop’ at the other end of town.

We had only visited this bookshop once before and basically (at that time) stumbled upon it just before closing time. That was three years ago…so we were keen to check it out this time around and we were so glad we did, for there was certainly some ‘Book Treasure’ to be uncovered!

I purchased five books, as follows:

  • Leaves Of Grass – Walt Whitman
  • Collected Poems 1936 – 1970 – James McAuley
  • Enjoying Poetry 1 – Silver and Gold – Chosen by E.W.Parker
  • Paint Luxurious Textures In Watercolor – Jennifer Sheffer
  • Creative Watercolour Artist – Readers Digest

Leaves of Grass – Walt Whitman

I had heard about this anthology a while ago and have wanted to get a copy of it for a while now. This is the ninth edition, the first having been written in 1892. Walt Whitman’s name first came to my attention when I saw, ‘Dead Poet’s Society’ starring Robin Williams. I am thrilled to add this to my Poetry Collection.

I look forward to delving into more of Walt Whitman’s work.

Collected Poems – James McAuley

I would to say that I had heard of this Australian Poet, however, I would be fibbing. Perhaps I have heard his name before but had forgotten it… It turns out that he was born in Lakemba (where I grew up). My research shows that he was a ‘Australian academic, poet, journalist, literary critic and a prominent convert to Roman Catholicism.’

Flipping through the pages at the bookshop I was not aware of who he was but quite liked his style of Poetry.

Enjoying Poetry 1 – Silver and Gold – Chosen by E.W.Parker

I already have a few ‘collections of Poetry’ so it can be a bit tricky sometimes buying, ‘another collection’ as one doesn’t want to be merely, ‘buying the same Poems all the time…’ It is inevitable that some will be repeated, however, I quite liked the format and illustration of this book. It turns out that there are three in the series and I shall ‘keep my eye out’ for the other two.

It is only a small, thin book that can be easily tucked into a bag so it will be a great book to ‘dip into’ from time-to-time.

Paint Luxurious Textures In Watercolor – Jennifer Sheffer

I am just about to do a ‘book cull’ and started off with a five or six ‘general-type’ Watercolour books. In recent times, I’m not looking at these generalist books much at all and have been looking for specific things/techniques within the Watercolour medium. This is where this book fits in.

It looks well-written and inspiring. An easy decision to buy it.

Creative Watercolour Artist – Readers Digest

I happened across a Goldmine in this book! It is a book, small easel and comes with a ‘Watercolour Wheel’ as well. The Paint Set was not with the book but that’s no problem as I already have paints. It says it has, ’12 Sunning Watercolour Projects’ and it is true to it’s word. It also has split-page/cross-referencing to (as it says), ‘giving you instant access to all the techniques you need to create each of the projects). 94 techniques are displayed, demonstrated and discussed!

This was a ‘no-brainer’ purchase as well.

Five pieces of ‘Book Treasure’ from one second-hand bookshop in a Country town we love to stop at. It is roughly three hours drive from where we live. Looking forward to our next visit!

In Part 3 of ‘Trip To The Country’ I will be focusing on Millthorpe, where we stayed for the wedding.

Till next time!

Written by David Johnson

17 April 2021

Book Treasure Abounds!

Last weekend on our mini-trip to Berrima for our ‘Other Anniversary’, one of the places we went to was one of our favourite bookshops, Berkelouw’s Book Barn. Berkelouw’s is a long-standing business which used to be a second-hand bookshop with approx. 250,000 books.

A few years back the business was converted to become a bookshop/restaurant/wedding reception venue. It now has only approx. 100,000 – 150,000 books.

Every year when we visit we set ourselves a budget and this year came away with more ‘book treasure.’

I was particularly delighted to pick up the following:

‘Artist’s On Art’ From the 14th to the 20th Century

It is an absolutely fascinating book which I am thoroughly enjoying ‘dipping into.’ To read what the Artists thought about Art in general and their own is indeed a delight!

‘Country Verse’ Edited by Samuel Carr

English Country Verse is set against English Country Landscape Paintings and it simply is wonderful to dive into and be whisked away to the English Countryside.

The other four books are novels and I am continuing to build up the library with classic authors of yesteryear:

‘The Black Arrow’ by Robert Louis Stevenson ‘The Great Gatsby’ by F. Scott Fitzgerald ‘Sweet Thursday’ by Johns Steinbeck ‘The Short Novels by John Steinbeck’ – ‘Tortilla Flat; ‘The Red Pony’; ‘Of Mice and Men’; ‘The Moon Is Down’; ‘Cannery Row’ and ‘The Pearl.’

Our trips to Berkelouw’s Book Barn never disappoint and we are looking forward to our next visit!

Written by David Johnson

25 November 2020