THE PURPOSE PITCH
Mansfield Press, 'a stuart ross book' (2015)
Cover art by David Poolman
If you would like a review copy, contact me here.
Drawing from a range of contemporary poetic traditions, The Purpose Pitch explores the overlap between narrative, pop culture, and the political. These poems are often funny, sometimes harrowing, and always unsettling. Through rants, narrative prose poems, absurdist dialogues, brutal police reports, invented biographies of real people, Google search results, and celebrity-interview mash-ups, Mockler shows us just how Boschian Western culture is in the twenty-first century.
Carl Watts, Canadian Literature, January 5, 2017
Mockler’s use of found text also works in tandem with her darker themes. “April 30-May 31, 2014” consists of eleven pages of police alerts relating to sexual assault. The sequence resembles the infamous fourth section of Roberto Bolaño’s 2666, but the inclusion of Canadian localities (as well as the very need to reiterate the prevalence of violence against women) enhances the repulsive power of Bolaño’s precedent.
Michael V. Smith, Writers' Trust of Canada, Warm Weather Reads, June 2015
My poetry for the summer: Kathryn Mockler’s The Purpose Pitch and David McGimpsey’s Asbestos Heights, both of whom wow me with their sense of play. Zany, inventive poems, full of thrills. Enviable language, enviable approaches to what a poem can be and do. Really grown up stuff, but, like, with their pants down or something.
Natalie Zina Walschots, This Magazine, May/June, 2015
Merciless as a grin full of razor blades, these poems rapidly cycle from hilarious to gutting, delighting in knocking the wind out of the reader. But even more than this, what defines The Purpose Pitch is how it revels in its cultural and linguistic vocabulary, drawn from pop and online culture, contemporary documents and search engine results.
Kimmy Beach, Canadian Poetries, May 11, 2015
Her method of presentation may not be what we're used to, but Mockler doesn't shy from the meat. A long piece entitled "April 30 - May 31st, 2014" is a collection of headlines about women who were sexually assaulted world-wide during that short window. That the piece is eleven pages long is both exhausting and eye-opening, and affirms Mockler's solid if unorthodox place in Canadian poetry.
Frank Davey, Frank Davey Blog, May 1, 2015
Among the growing number of alternatives to lyric self-expressive poetry, this is sparkling collection, full of wit, irony and entertaining hopelessness. There's very little hope here in fact, except for the imagination, but much more bang than whimper.
Jonathan Ball, the Winnipeg Free Press, April 25, 2015
Kathryn Mockler’s The Purpose Pitch (Mansfield, 96 pages, $17) combines True Detective levels of despondence with the wry humour of a Wilde. If Rust Cohle published poetry, it would go a little something like this: "How old were you when you realized the world was a nightmare from which you could never wake?"
Presenting surreal, speculative worlds, the Toronto-based Mockler offers one brilliant, dark conceit after another. "I’m very good with death," proclaims one poem, while another counsels that "you will meet people in life with punchable faces Skyler is one of them." Mockler’s tone holds firm to its bleakness while cracking wise, having fun in the face of horror.
Remember, kids: "the English teacher is not a credible source because she wants to kill herself."
Maria Meindl @MariaMeindl Jul 10
Belated thanks to the lovely, talented and scary-good @themockler for her hilarious The Purpose Pitch @MansfieldPress Read it!
Michael V Smith @MichaelVeeSmith Jun 9
@themockler's The Purpose Pitch is a fantastic book. Language unpredictable as snakes. Well done @MansfieldPress. #canlit
Janet Turpin Myers @janetturpinmyer Jun 6
Loved Kathryn Mockler reading her 'Stephen Harper' poem. Sugar t*ts! What will become of him? #DontPissOffAPoet @themockler @LitLiveReadings
Mary @marykilmer May 27
I <3 too many things to list about Kathryn Mockler's latest poetry collection, The Purpose Pitch. you should read it.@MansfieldPress #canlit
BuriedInPrint @buriedinprint May 25
This morning, "Poetry - You're Popular, Okay" by Kathryn Mockler made me smile. Several times. Thanks. @themockler #verse #canlit
Billeh Nickerson, May 22
When reading Kathryn Mockler's "The Purpose Pitch" in your local cafe, it is important to wear something sparkly.
Nikki Maud-Marie Reimer, May 17
52. The Purpose Pitch -- Kathryn Mockler #95books This book is killer
Lisa de Nikolits, March 26
There's a lot being said about Stephen Harper these days but if you ask me, this sums it up best… With thanks Kathryn Mockler, this poem is from her new collection, The Purpose Pitch (Mansfield Press)