The novelist and essayist Gore Vidal has passed away. He was 86 years old.

He wrote many novels, screenplays and a bookshelf full of inspiring essays. His novels included: Myra Breckinridge, Burr , Lincoln, 1876, Empire, Hollywood, and Washington, D.C.

Here is an excerpt from an essay about Orson Welles that ends with a magical phone call between Vidal, Welles, and singer Rudy Vallee. It is a haunting way to remember the great author.

I have a recurring fantasy that if one were to dial the telephone number of someone in the past, one would hear again a familiar voice, and time would instantly rewind from now to then. I still have Orson’s telephone number in my book (213-851-8458) … From out of the past, I hear, “My time is your time,” in that reedy highly imitable voice. The afterlife’s only a dial tone away. “What makes you think that this is the afterlife?” Orson chuckles. “This is a recording.” Stop story here.

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