He squeezed into the subway seat next to me. I held my bags securely in my lap and tucked my jacket's edge so that nothing crossed the raised plastic edge dividing his seat from mine. He said I was okay - that I was giving him enough space.
I listened to music through headphones, and he apologized for interrupting as I removed a bud from the ear facing him: "Sorry, what did you say?"
"How are you?" he asked.
"Mondays," he said. "What are you listening to?"
I showed him my phone's screen.
"Ah," and he started singing the song without the words.
"So Cat Stevens is spring?" he asked.
"This song is for me, this spring."
"It's in my head now."
I told him that the only cure for that is listening to it, and he named the only other Cat Stevens song he knew and asked me if I knew it too. I didn't.
"Have you ever met someone who named their cat Cat Stevens?" he asked.
"No, but that'd be funny." His laugh shook his whole body back and forth.
Just then, for the first time, I turned my head and looked at him. He wore a khaki hat. His black hair poked out from underneath and lay across his tan cheeks. I never saw his eyes.
I went home and ate dinner while watching some program I don't remember on my computer.
The next morning, I listened to the same playlist on the subway ride to work. "Wild World" began, and I remembered the song he mentioned that I didn't know. When I arrived at my desk, I listened to it for the first time, and as I listened, I remembered him smiling and laughing in a subway car on a Monday night.