The gaps are the thing. The gaps are the spirit's one home, the altitudes and latitudes so dazzlingly spare and clean that the spirit can discover itself like a once-blind man unbound. The gaps are the clefts in the rock where you cower to see the back parts of God; they are fissures between mountains and cells the wind lances through, the icy narrowing fiords splitting the cliffs of mystery. Go up into the gaps. If you can find them; they shift and vanish too. Stalk the gaps. Squeak into a gap in the soil, turn, and unlock—more than a maple—universe.
Regret hung from the hem of everyone's lives, a rip cord reminder that what you want is not always what you get. Look at himself, outliving Aimee. Or Az, trying to find his daughter, only to have her wind up dead. Look at Shelby, with a child who was dying by degrees. Ethan, born into a body nobody deserves. At some point or another, everyone was failed by this world. Disappointment was the one thin humans had in common. Taken this way, Ross didn't feel quite so alone. Trapped in your whirlpool of what might have been, you might no be able to drag yourself out - but you could be saved by someone else who reached in.