Matthias London

Iguazu Falls
A Psychedelic Visual and Narrative Exploration

This is the story of how I found faith. Something to believe in, after it had been destroyed by nihilism, Marxism, and occidental politicization. Yes, I have found faith. And Marian has brought it to me.


It didn’t take long for the acid to take hold. I first realized when we came to the counter where we had to pay. I took out Gusti’s national identification document that he lent me to not pay the foreigner entrance fee and handed it over to the lady behind the counter. Although I had memorized the information on it – Gustavo Alberto Peterman, I’m Libra, born 10th of October 1983, resident of Misiones – I hid under my visor. Marian showed her his Argentinian passport and she said that he needed to show her the DNI, not the passport, which had me cracking up laughing.

“Can you believe it?” Marian said, “They’re more suspicious of me than of you!”

“Insane. Gusti’s DNI is expired, you can’t see the picture, and she didn’t even look at me.”

“And they charged you the price for local inhabitants.”

“600 pesos,” I contemplated.

We made our way to the entrance where you would have to show the entrance card to a man and pass through. But when we got, everything went wrong.

The man smiled at us and spoke to us in a lingo that I did not understand.

“Yeah, I’m from Misiones,” Marian responded.

Then the man looked at me. From Marian’s response, it was clear that he asked where we were from. But what was I supposed to say? I said nothing at the counter but could this guy figure out that I was lying? I waved my head left and right. The silence sitting between us was so uncomfortably long already. A sweat pearl dropped from my cheek. The man stopped smiling. The only thing I could think of was ‘green.’

“Germany,” Marian finally said and the smile reappeared on the man’s face. He wished us farewell and sent us into the national park.

Marian and I walked to the Garganta del Diablo instead of taking the train. It wasn’t like we were in a hurry. And the walk went through the jungle of a national park, very similar to the hike to Machu Picchu along the railway trails just shorter and less wild. 

We did a pit stop by a tranquil canal of the Iguazu River, got undressed, about to jump in, when Marian mentioned that there was a camera and a sign that you weren’t allowed to swim. He was right, this wasn’t the right place to take a swim. But we dug our heads in and swung them out, cooling ourselves down in the damp humid jungle environment. But we did take another drop. “I’ll follow you anywhere you go,” Marian said. 

It took no time for us to arrive at the entrance to the Garganta del Diablo, “Teufelsrachen Bahnhof,” Marian called it. At least it seemed so. We probably took ages. 

Crossing the river on metallic bridges paving a zigzag way across the seemingly infinitely wide river took us time. More time than usual. So much time, that by the time we arrived at the Garganta del Diablo, three trains and its riders had passed by. 

But the way was simply astonishing. There was no need to hurry through the zigzag bridges. The landscapes standing on either side were breathtaking. Reflections of the clouds in the river stream embraced by islands of green in million shades. There was a lot to see there. Even more with the acid kicking in. 

At one of the pitstops on the way that was covered by trees, Marian almost lost it. Cute little animals that seemed like a mixture of raccoon, monkey, and coati hung around, unafraid to get close to the humans, even mounting those sitting on benches, aiming for their backpacks, or rather the insides. “Stupid humans,” Marian mumbled, then he grabbed me by the shoulders and stared me down with madness dwelling in his eyes, “Of course, they’ll get at you if you take out a chocolate bar! That’s refined sugar, they strive off that shit.” He paused and looked at one of them. People were taking pictures. 

“They look cute but they’re not. They’re dangerous. One second of unawareness and they snatch your backpack, rip it open, empty the insides, get the food, and leave it in the river.” He breathed, his eyes wide open, too wide, “Look at this!” and he pointed at one of them that was sneaking up behind one of those stupid humans from behind a tree while another was distracting him in front. “They’re evil. They’re from the jungle. And we are not.”

He was right, in a way, the animals here were wild and we urban dwellers often underestimate their behavior. I took Marian into my arms and suggested that we continue our path. He agreed and we passed into the next open landscape of river meeting jungle with sun and cloud reflections that had us mesmerized for minutes. Another train of people passed by us while our gaze lazily drifted into the far and twizzled our sense of time.

I am not going to try to describe what happened at the Garganta del Diablo. Someone else did, and he did it better than anyone ever could, releasing you from the burden to even try, inviting you to just absorb. It’s a poem by Alfonso Riccuitto and it reads:

Maravilla Natural Garganta del Diablo


Permite que tu alma sea saciada

con la belleza impar de este paisaje

que aunque el mundo recorras en tus viajes

nunca podrás hallar, como esto, nada


el bien y el mal dinámico y cambiante

encontrarás aquí desde su nombre

lleva en tu humilde corazón de hombre

un mensaje verídico y constante


medita y siente la emoción profunda

contemplando el vibrante paroxismo

que de brumas eternas se circunda


y no intentes describirlo con tu voz

solo inclina la frente ante éste abismo

que es el espejo de la palabra Dios.

Natural Wonder Devil’s Throat


Let your soul be sated

with the odd beauty of this landscape

that although the world scrolling through on your travel

you can never find anything like this


good and bad dynamic and changing

find here since your name

takes your humble heart of a man

truthful and consistent message


meditate and feel the deep emotion

watching the vibrant paroxysm

eternal mists that is circled


and do not try to describe it with your voice

just leans his forehead against this abyss

which is the mirror of the word of God.

Marian said that we were lucky, that he had never been there when there were as few people as the day we went. Usually, people would knock each other off the fence to snatch a photo with the waterfalls in the background, all facing their back to this divine portal. 

Never have I seen as much water fall into the same spot, you couldn’t even see the place where it hit bottom, that’s how much sprinkles of water the impact hurled into the air, clouds of sprinkles that blurred your vision. 

Marian said that if you look closely, you should see rainbows, to which I said, “I don’t know about you, but I see like a million rainbows falling down with the water.”

“What is this even?” Marian asked. 

“Light. It’s just light. Breaking in a way that we can see it through the water sprinkles.”

“Just light. Impossible. This is divine!” Marian yakked, “This is happening all the time, nonstop, but I am convinced that today, it put up a special performance for us. This is not normal.”

I agreed. This was outstanding. We glued ourselves to the border of the fence and waited for the wind to hurl clouds of water sprinkles our way. Purifying water. The downpour of water sucked up all negativity, all tension, all sorrow, and pain into hell – it’s called the Graganta del Diablo for a reason –, and then splashed its purified life-force energy. 

It’s been an incredibly sexy ritual, for some reason, I mean, it’s the “Garganta” del Diablo, water splashes in there, “Baba del Diablo,” is the saliva that we squish out when we deep throat cock, Marian explained me, could the connection be any more direct? “Se entiende, no?” I asked, and Marian flipped, “Si, se entiende! What else do you want me to do? If you don’t stop talking, I’ll take you right here, god damn it! But I think I can control myself…” and after a pause, “I think.” The water splashing on us might as well be the waterfall’s pussy juice, hailing you toward its irresistible beauty. 

When my erection went down, Marian screamed, “This is a moment of hard intentions,” and he closed his eyes and waved his hands towards his face, then away, manic, back to his face, as if he was directing the water sprinkles his way. He was hardcore manifesting at that moment, an all-embodying effort that left him exhausted when he came back to himself. Angelic. Holy. Vulnerable. Honest. 

I also set some intentions. I manifested that I would have the best time in Brazil, that I’ll get along with Marina, that I’ll meet Neus, and that I’ll relax but also produce audio-visual content that I like, without stress. I manifested that a year from now, I’ll have a portfolio that grants me jobs in photography and videography, mostly in the production part, but also edits that I can do from anywhere. In three years from now, I will have two homes: One in Berlin, perhaps by myself, and one in Mexico City or Buenos Aires. I manifested that five years from now, I’ll sit in a premiere of an ethnographic documentary where I am the director of photography and see my name pass by in the credits. I manifested that I connect to the universal flow. Now, I drop all that is bad and receive all that is good; I share it with those who did not have the opportunity to come to Iguazu. 

I stood there for a good while trying to think of any problem I could let go of, but none of them seemed to matter. The massive waterfalls made my existence seem insignificant and put everything into perspective. It was like a moment of spiritual enlightenment, where I experienced the bliss of absolute presence. A shortcut, very similar to shortcuts enabled by psychoactive substances. Oh, of which we took a healthy dose that day, 4 drops each, to be precise. The two of them simultaneously had me seriously elevated. I was where I was supposed to be. Nothing else mattered. Nothing. 

Marian and I decided to have a picnic there and agreed that it was the most epic picnic either of us had ever taken. We pinkie-promised that we would someday have a better one. I said that I’ll miss him. 

“You’re lying,” he said. 

“No, I’m not.”

“No, this is not what you want to say.”

I didn’t understand. 

“I mean when you say, ‘I’ll miss you,’ you say something that is similar to jealousy. Because it’s based on possessiveness. It means that I want you to be here although you’re far away,” Marian explained. 

I still didn’t follow. 

“I wish you well,” he said. Sincerity and kindness were written in his dilated eyes, “When you’re far, I wish that you have a picnic like this. That you meet awesome people. The best. That you’re experiencing bliss and joy.”

I started to dig him. Everything he had previously explained to me about PNL (Programacion Neuro-Linguistica) or discursive neurological wiring slowly started to fall into its place. But I hadn’t yet grasped it fully. 

“I think I have synthesized enough,” Marian said, and we prepared to depart. I wasn’t fully ready and once more returned to the wonderful sight. “One last time,” I pleaded and met Marian’s understanding smile. Then, I bid my farewell. I uttered my gratitude. I begged for strength. “I think I’m ready,” I said, and we headed back.

It was dusking and we were not yet ready to leave. But Marian, as usual, had a plan. “We’re going to the hotel here,” he said, “We’re guests now, don’t forget that.”

“Is that important?” I asked. 

“Of course it is, you must believe it yourself first.” At that moment, a park security guy asked, “Are you guests of the Old Hotel?”

“Yes we are,” Marian said, and to me, “See, he assumed that we are guests, he didn’t ask ‘Where are you going,’ he asked ‘Are you guests,’ all because I don’t doubt that I’m a guest. I’m a millionaire.”

Although it didn’t seem that either the guard at the back entrance or the ladies at the bar in the third story really believed that we were guests who had checked out in the morning, we somehow still ended up sitting with an Amarulla on ice and Malibu with coca cola staring at the waterfalls in the far and monkeys climbing around the hotel area with whatever they could snatch from people in the near. It was truly unbelievable. Two jerks, one wearing a fishnet, the other looking like a cheap version of a chulo, both dirty as fuck, worn out by the day, emitting madness from all pores, and they still let us pass. 

“We deserve this,” I said. 

“We deserve better,” Marian responded, pouching his lips, “But this is okay. You gotta be thankful when you receive a gift from the universe.”

Shortly after the moon rise, we approached the infinity pool overlooking the waterfalls, full moon in Scorpio – “can’t think of anything but sex when I contemplate full moon in Scorpio,” said Marian – and we sat down in a couch close to the pool, testing the ground. We wanted to get in but perhaps it would be abusing the good intentions coming our way a little too much.

It is here when Marian broke down his belief system to me. “There are things that simply cannot be. There is a superior power at work. In everything all the time.”

“What do you mean?” I asked.

“I mean that I believe in syncretism. I believe that all religions are true. I mean, don’t you feel that there’s something out there that is bigger than you?”

“I do, but…”

“Don’t you feel the magnetism? Don’t you think that it was no coincidence that we met? I don’t care if you believe in anything bigger than yourself. But I do. And I see it. Every day. And I call it God.”

I hesitated. What did I believe in?

“And I have faith. I have faith in good intentions. Every day I manifest to the superior power. And every day I receive responses.”

“I have lost my faith,” I finally said.

“Well, what do you believe in?”

“I’m going through a crisis of faith, Marian. I don’t know what I believe in,” I repeated. “I don’t know what has brought me here. Religion was killed long ago, and I’ve tried to recover my spirituality elsewhere, have had moments when I felt like I was flowing, where my intentions fulfilled themselves, where my spirit was aligned.” I paused. “But I’m lacking a framework that grants me continuity. I lose my directionality. It’s too vague.”

“My friend. Even if you don’t believe in your God, know that I am here, and I believe in mine, and I make things come true, for me, and you. I manifest for you. Remember that,” Marian said.

And we lay there for some more time under the cloudy full moon. I had decided that I would have faith. I was converted. I was changed.