If I Had Just Said Hello

She’s a shy student with messy brown hair. She’s layered. She has pale skinny legs under sheer black tights under short shorts under an oversized sweater. Tight in certain places, loose in others. Her knees and toes point toward each other, her eyes droop and she frowns. She looks down.

She listens to music, her headphones the size of her head. She’s in her own world. I enter the train and sit directly across from her. I look at her, look for what seems like forever, sure that everyone except her is noticing. She finally glances up toward me, then darts her eyes away quickly.

I’m listening to music too, but I can’t tune her out. I keep looking. I look at her mousy face and her fidgety legs. She has pointy features and slender fingers. She holds herself up just barely with her thin hidden body. Her hair is in her face and she tries to move it, fails, sighs as if her whole life is an exasperation. She glances up quickly again.

How sad is she, exactly? Is it possible for her to be happy? Could she be happy with me? She can feel me looking at her, can’t she?