Gulsen Göksel

Mira and Goynek

My daughter Mira wakes up every day around noon and makes herself a cup of coffee. It’s her routine during quarantine with her parents in a small apartment in Bern, Switzerland, away from her friends and classes. Quarantine days are draining—fast and slow, meshing together and dragging along, without beginning or end.

Goynek is an old, traditional form of lingerie from Turkey; it is like a woman’s second skin. It remains tightly twisted when not in use. I put the garment on and walked out, down the highway in Bern, pausing at a billboard image of a woman reclining seductively, advertising lingerie. Then, I continued into a forest and wandered into an area of sawed-down trees. I climbed onto one of the tree trunks and posed in my goynek, a sad monument to environmental destruction and loss of culture.