The mysterious, beautiful lady,
Sat alone upon the train.
A teardrop on her cheek,
Revealed an inner pain.

The crowded train compartment,
Was not where she belonged.
So totally out of place,
Something very wrong.


Her clothing, tasteful and expensive,
I would guess one-of-a-kind.
Her small chapeau exposed.
Her lovely hair, luminous and fine.

Only one small satchel with her,
No other luggage seen.
She gripped the bag with both her hands,
Beneath an unread magazine.

Occasionally she dabbed her cheek,
With her handkerchief of lace.
As she tried to stem the flow of tears,
That kept running down her face.

She stared, unseeing, through the window,
While the scenery flashed by,
Her head, slightly nodding as the wheels turned,
She behaved, as mesmerized.


Suddenly, a high-pitched whistle,
Jolted her and brought her back.
She looked around uneasily,
The train continued down the track.

As the train approached the border,
It began slowing to a crawl.
Uniformed guards appeared from nowhere,
"PASSPORTS! PASSPORTS!" was their call.


The passengers dug in their pockets,
And searched their purses to obey.
My lady by the window - flustered,
Her color quickly drained away.

The guards picked up the documents,
Then disappeared from view.
The place, abuzz with folk's conjectures,
What was wrong? Nobody knew.


Fear showed on my lady's face,
I could tell she was upset.
I smiled reassuringly,
And, for the first time, our eyes met.

She smiled sadly, in return,
Then came heavy footsteps to our ears.
We all looked toward the entry way,
As another officer appeared.


"YOU!" his loud voice boomed out,
The lady trembled, as she stood,
She almost fell; she brushed my knee.

Her bag fell down upon the floor,
She had lost her grip.
As I bent to get it for her,


He grabbed her roughly by the arm,
She gasped, mortally afraid.
He pushed and shoved her from the car,
I stood up; I was outraged.

My fellow passengers restrained me,
Saying, "There is nothing you can do.
We are too weak; they are too strong,
Take care - you don't want them after you."


Good sense prevailed, and I stayed still,
Though tormented by her frightened face.
The train moved on; all now was calm,
Everyone sat back in place.

That night, in my hotel room,
With a glass of fine, white wine.
I sat down with my lady's satchel,
Hoping some I D to find.


The way she'd hugged it to herself,
I thought it might hold cash or gems.
Undoubtedly something important,
Papers, I might not comprehend.

Gingerly, I opened it,
Carefully taking out its contents.
Papers, pictures, photographs,
Certificates and documents.


Letters tied with faded ribbons,
Addresses, indistinct with age.
Clippings from the newspapers,
Some, obviously, front page.

Dukes, Duchesses, Barons, Baronesses,
From a minor principality.
Evidence of elegance,
Of pomp, grandeur, nobility.


The enclosed, papers told a tale,
Of a tragic, family history.
Now I began to understand,
My lovely lady's mystery.

I read through the papers she had saved,
About the crazed assasinations,
Bombings, slaughters, killings.
Bloodbaths and annihilations.


They told how the rebels got control,
How they seized the Royals in the land.
How they murdered all, but one,
Who had slipped through their bloodied hands.

My Baroness of Beauty,
My Lady of the Train.
A price put on her head,
The last Royal to remain.


The first thing, come next morning,
I raced to my Embassy.
I hoped I would not be too late,
To stop this insane thing.

But, a paper thrust into my hand,
Confirmed my fears were true.
The Baroness was killed last night,
There was nothing I could do.


I searched and found a chapel then,
With a kindly Friar in attendance.
I told him the story of my lady,
He offered prayers in her remembrance.

As he listened to my awful tale,
Into his hands, I placed her purse.
Then he consigned her soul to heaven,
And he blest her from this earth.

That night, I raised my glass to her,
I had a message to impart.
"To my Lady of the Train" I said,
"You'll be forever in my heart."

Virginia (Ginny) Ellis
copyright 2001

(To read Part Two of THE LADY OF THE TRAIN click HERE.)

The picture of the lady is
Amelia Anne's Grandmother. 
One beautiful lady in spirit and heart.

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