Another new year has arrived with its hopes and expectations—perhaps already a bit battered a few days into January—but 2013 has me looking back instead of forward.
A hundred years ago a little girl disappeared from a little Indiana town, never to be seen again. Seven or eight years ago I discovered her name the way so many did once—in a newspaper. Five years ago I made reading those old articles a full-time job and ongoing obsession. One year ago I wrote a book about her.
And now I wait, and wonder what 2013 will bring, and what Catherine Winters would think if she could open her front door again and traverse her town, if she would see anything she recognized, if she would see a better or a worse place, a better or a worse time.
As always, I wonder where she is—her body, her spirit, her red sweater. All that was lost and forgotten.