A Castle that might be Stirling

A burst envelope and seventy years
is on the floor, photographs,
all sizes from the box brownie
to the age of instamatic
and earlier: those ones like wafers
too small or dark to make out
but icons you can tell in the story.

Some are flaked, some warped,
but all are unknown to me,
even my own face is unknown to me,
white and swimming up
like in the sea.
Someone with the tiny
beautiful script my family

was famed for should have written –
Boturich 1963, the weather was hot, the company on edge, behind them
the sun was setting in pieces by the boathouse-
but my scribes tantalise me
with their hopeless clues,

a name here, a date there
and all that’s left is cottages,
smiles for the lost cameraman,
some dahlias, walls,
trees at sunset, a castle
that might be Stirling,
a dog that might be mine.