Traffic Stop cover from FLPTraffic Stop (Finishing Line Press, 2011) contains some of Heller’s best poems written from the 1970s to 2009. Themes include being an assertive nontraditional woman, having close relationships, teaching college English and women’s studies, loving nature, traveling, being involved in the anti-Vietnam War movement, mourning her father’s death, experiencing folk music at different stages of her life, and being an artist/entertainer/writer. The cover artwork is by Michigan artist Lori McElrath-Eslick.

Here are some comments about Heller’s book from Patricia Clark, who teaches creative writing at Grand Valley State University, and Judith Minty, who taught creative writing at Humboldt State University.

Enjoy these poems that tell rich tales of rebellion, budding sexuality, and academic life–all told with humor, wit, and grace.

–Patricia Clark, author of She Walks into the Sea, My Father on a Bicycle, and North of Wondering


Janet Heller’s Traffic Stop is not only an interesting but an abiding collection. Her poems are set in the rich history of what began as the Women’s Movement, which helped to give many women the positions and earnings they deserved. These pieces speak of what the author and other women stand for, how they have patiently worked toward equality; and it reminds us about what is often taken for granted today.

What I love most about these poems is their womanly strength. Heller’s words ring true and are not compromised. I have smiled, and even laughed, at times–at how straightforward these poems speak. At the same time, I feel the heart-ache of the struggle the poet depicts for women, how hard it has been to achieve some of the fairness that we have in this world today. Heller does an excellent job of combining these two facets in this collection.

–Judith Minty, author of Walking with the Bear, Dancing the Fault, Yellow Dog Journal, Lake Songs and Other Fears, In the Presence of Mothers, Counting the Losses, The Mad Painter Poems


Heller also wrote the award-winning children’s book about bullying, How the Moon Regained Her Shape (Arbordale, 2006). See Heller’s website is

You can order Traffic Stop from Amazon and from Finishing Line Press for $15.50 per copy, which includes postage. The ISBN-10 is 1-59924-752-6, and the ISBN-13 is 978-1-59924-752-6.

Finishing Line Press

Post Office Box 1626

Georgetown, KY40324



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