"Death is a gentle and exquisite lover! With one kiss He can steal your soul and lay your flesh aside like an empty dress.
He rests His spectral body beside me enfolding me in His enormous wings, and hides His private anguish behind a phantom's veil He lifts only for me. Beneath this diaphanous shroud, tears of light spill from dark, hollow eyes. It is with love that I offer the world His poignant tale."
-OUR NAME IS MELANCHOLY; THE COMPLETE BOOK OF AZRAEL
Leilah Wendell is the founder of WESTGATE and author of OUR NAME IS MELANCHOLY; THE COMPLETE BOOK OF AZRAEL. For those who don't know, WESTGATE is a museum/ gallery in honor of AZRAEL, better known as the Angel of Death and features posters, fine arts, book, cards, sculptures, jewelry, and many more intriguing items.
" As a child Leilah Wendall grew up shadowed by a powerful and dark entity. Unremembered to her at first, this spirit became the host of numerous paranormal and extraordinary occurrences. These haunting events led her on a life long excursion into the astral world, more precisely, into the VALLEY OF THE SHADOWS."
Leilah has dedicated her life to researching, writing and teaching matters related to the cosmic and metaphysical, especially in the gray areas where light and darkness merge in the most necessary and important balance.
She is also a publisher, editor, poet and professional artist. She has over 300 published works and 10 or more books. Her most popular book among the creatures of the underworld is the one quoted above.
Born in Long Island, NY (USA); and I must say we are definitely proud of this intellectual woman, she currently lives in New Orleans, LA where she is the proprietress of Westgate, the first and only gallery/ museum of necromantic art and literature.
Some of the other titles of Leilah's fascinating books are: THE VIEW FROM THE BRIDGE THE NECROMANTIC BOOK OF SHADOWS SHADOWS OF THE HALF-LIGHT THE AZRAEL PROJECT NEWSLETTER.
And now, without further delay here is our interview with our messenger of Death.
I. When where you first intrigued by Death?
I have been intrigued by the Death energy ever since I can remember. As a young child, I often sought out areas conductive to this energy.
II. Could you tell us a little about your books? The Book of the Bridge was completed and joined together with a revised book to become Our Name is Melancholy; The Complete Book of Azrael, which brings us full circle to a greater understanding of the Angel of Death's purpose here and hereafter. Through Azrael's own words and the writings of His incarnate 'soul-mate', the founder of Westgate , this awesome spirit reveals to all his true nature and purpose. It is more or less a haunting 'autobiography' of the Angel of Death, both mighty in sorrow and in joy. The Azrael Projectis an eerie herald come to enchant the world with a divine dance macabre.
III. Do you have any plans for another book?
Yes, plans are in the works. But after ten books, much thought is required for anything new to be expressed.
IV. How do you explain to people, who don't believe in the Angel of Death, that your books aren't just stories imagined by yourself?
To this day, many years down the road, it STILL amazes me that 99% of the people who have read my books have no questions of its credulity. Most of the people who have read my materials, have either had encounters with the Angel of Death themselves, OR are attracted, as I was, by the current Death. For those that still may disbelieve, there will come a day when they will see for themselves. I do not feel a need to 'explain' myself to anyone. I have long since shed any defense mechanisms. To be defensive, is to doubt oneself.
V. Why is death usually personified as male; how would you describe DEATH as a visual entity?
As I am 'personified' as female in this incarnation, I have no choice but to refer to Azrael as 'HE'. I certainly can't go around calling the Angel of Death, IT. The Angel of Death HAS no gender, and can personify in any form 'HE' likes. From a gentle wind, to a towering darkness. It depends on what He thinks that you can handle, and how YOU perceive a personified DEATH.
VI. Have you ever run into any problems with those who may not agree with your views?
There are always those dissent. Mostly, out of fear. After all, Death IS the last 'taboo' subject in our culture. . and still, the greatest fear. People react without thinking, and /or close their minds when it comes to this topic. No one has to 'agree' with me, listen with an open mind so that when your time comes to greet Him, you can do so gracefully and without fear.
VII. What would you say to those considering suicide?
If you leave this world before your 'time', be prepared to come back and do it all over again until you get it right. We are all each here for a purpose, no matter how small or insignificant it may seem to you, it can alter everything in time.
VIII. What type of music intrigues you?
Hum..I like a wide range of things. Everything from OLD heavy metal, particularly BLACK SABBATH, to pipe organs fugues and Celtic ballads. Don't care much for currently popular music. It doesn't say anything anymore, like it used to. It's better to ask me what I don't like. That is easy. I detest RAP, OPERA, DISCO COUNTRY, and 40's ditties. I can just about tolerate anything else.
IX. Is there anything you would like to inform our readers?
Yes…a storm is coming.
To contact Westgate write to:
5219 Magazine St.,
New Orleans, LA 70115 USA.