I was birthed by math, stone, and necessity. Math demonstrated the need for me, and sketched out my bones. Stone built my body. Necessity gave me function. All these things combined to give me life, but it was man who gave me purpose.
Thomas was my keeper and we watched the night together, my light shifting back and forth as a warning to anyone who was lost. "Beware the rocks below and the shore nearby!"
Our charge was the safety and security of man, and I reveled in our time together. I stood strong, protective, as the waves moved endlessly against me, sturdy against the might of the wind, and unafraid of the darkness of night. Together we would read the stars.
In time, my keeper took a wife. The first time they were together was within me, and we were full of each other's scent. I admit, there was some jealousy at first - I did not want to share my stars – but she was a sweet thing who loved Thomas dearly, and kept him safe and happy beyond my walls. For this, I loved her equally, and she became precious to me.
She bore him a son first. Jerimiah was wild like the wind and sweet like his mother, with a kind heart and sturdy hands. Seraphina came second, and she was short lived and precious. The night she left this world was the first I spent alone, and I grieved her along with the salt of the air.
After the early death of Seraphina, there were no more children and my keepers wife spent less and less time with us in the night. Still, she would visit occasionally, sometimes with Jerimiah, and the three of us taught him how to love the stars and the sea and the darkness and the silence.
Of course, there were the nights when Jerimiah did not join in her visits. On those nights, I felt purpose and life return to my keeper, and I rejoiced along with the crashing waves.
Sadly, it is not in the nature of humanity to remain still, and so it was that my keeper's wife left our tiny spec of land and entered the sea upon a vessel. "It will only be for a short time," she told us, her fingers light on my railing. "My parents miss me, but I will always return to you."
I was birthed by math, stone, and necessity, and never did I feel such purpose as when my keeper's wife was away. She had taken Jerimiah as well, so that he might experience more of the world, and my keeper spent all day and all night in my tower helping me watch for their ship on the horizon.
But fate is a cruel thing.
The night I spotted her ship was moonless and the wind was harsh. The waves sang the song of the siren, and although I valiantly shone my light upon the stones below, the sea would not listen to me. It tossed, it turned, and it swallowed.
Thomas urged me on, but there is only so much math and stone can do against a furious sea, and despite the necessity, I could not save them. The siren's song called to the ship, and it shattered into the rocks below.
This was the first time I ever saw my keeper angry, for he had always been a gentle soul, full of compassion and hope. But when the bodies of his wife and child were pulled from the wreckage, he turned his eyes upon me, and they were full of darkness.
I tried my best to remind him of our love for the stars. I wove the story of their first night together over and over, but the darkness only grew deeper, hotter, until there was nothing inside my keeper but fury.
As the sun set the following day, he smashed my light and poured gasoline on my gears. He set me ablaze, as if to punish me for my failure, but no punishment could have been greater than his hatred.
When it was done, I was burnt, but still standing. I was birthed by math, stone and necessity. He could not break me.
His fury melted into desperation and despair.
My keeper climbed my circular staircase, and I flooded him with forgiveness, for I too had mourned. For a moment, we stood together in the darkness, watching the stars until he murmured "I will always return to you." In horror, I watched as he leapt from my railing, and no amount math, stone, nor necessity could save him.
Now repaired and alone, I wait for the sea to wear me down and turn my body to sand. "I will return to you," I tell my memories, and shine my light out on the waves.