Inspired by the author’s real life encounters with displaced and homeless people this story is presented from the viewpoint of a child narrator. This little girl seems, as the story opens, to be the only person who has noticed the lone woman sitting with her dog although she too admits having walked past initially. The child calls her a Queen and contemplates the possible battles she’s participated in, the journeys she’s made, the dragons she’s fought and her countless adventures the world over. Having won her mother round, there are still all the other locals to convince that this woman deserves their attention and their kindness.
When she and her mother stop, they sometimes hear tales about other places she’s visited, this woman on the corner who keeps a protective watch over the area and looks out for possible dangers.
Then one hot windy night danger does come; it takes the form of a fire that grows and spreads, the alarm being sounded by the Queen and her ‘royal hound’ Now it’s time for the young narrator to speak out in support of ‘our Queen’ as she calls the woman for it’s thanks to her that their homes were saved. Finally the people stop, take notice and thank the woman offering her warm blankets and water. Then, at little girl’s suggestion, everybody works together to build their saviour her very own home – a place on the corner from which she still keeps watch, but also entertains those who stop by for tea and a chat.
This is a tale of looking for the inherent worth of everybody, in particular homeless people, and trying one’s best to understand and support them. It should help youngsters realise that everybody’s story contains both ups and downs. It also shows one shouldn’t judge by appearances, demonstrates the power of community and highlights the importance of having somewhere you can call home. Nia Tudor makes dramatic use of light and dark in her powerful scenes that capture the feelings and emotions of ‘the Queen’, the narrator and other members of the local community.