Passport Control

by Joseph McKeown


"I DON’T know if I’ll ever be comfortable with the silence that comes after I’ve handed my papers to the passport control officer. In that moment, I instantly recall all my faults and sins from my childhood, including the day I accidentally broke an entire bowl of ceramic fruits from a friend’s dinner table. (I later tried to glue them back together.) There should be a German word for this fear, something long and terrifying. Instead of being afraid to fly, I’m mortally afraid of landing and being judged by the officer at the airport, even if I don’t have anything to hide."

- Vanessa Barbara
  "A Very Suspicious Traveler"