A strange sensation accompanies me these past few weeks, a feeling that I am burdened, but not in the more familiar, immediate ways—too many bills, too much work, too much time wasted. The burden I am aware of now I have been aware of before, in flashes: the burden of my species. Much the way anger can burrow down and tap into a reservoir of emotion, a pool of all the times I have felt rage before, and thus morph into a reaction far out of proportion with whatever inspired it, I think this combination of exasperation and exhaustion I feel is probably outsized as well, but believing that does not really help. The members of my species who refuse to help others by getting vaccinated, or wearing a mask, overlaps with those of my brethren who refuse to see how our continued defilement of the planet is making it painfully inhospitable to us, and though I know, as I heard it neatly put once, we can only move forward as quickly as the slowest member of the herd, I fear we are not moving fast enough to prevent a future of extraordinary privation, and even extinction. I do hope this is an exaggeration, just another version of the apocalyptic sentiment that seems part of the structure of human minds—but today, it feels a very, very heavy load to bear.