Love makes their world go around
It is printed indelibly in the minds of so many people, a picture that is so starkly symbolic of the savagery and despair of war. It is little Kim Phuc screaming with pain as she runs along the road during the Vietnam war. Kim knows no hate, though – only love. Marilyn Kerjean writes
Doesn’t it do the soul good to look at these beautiful photographs? They evoke a feeling for the essence of the truly human capacity for friendship and love.
They are a sample from the second and third volumes in the MILK (Moments of Intimacy, Laughter and Kinship) trilogy: Friendship and Love. The first volume, Family, was reviewed by The Catholic Weekly in April this year.
Sixteen Australian photographers have had their work featured in Family, Friendship and Love.
Their images are some of the 300 photographs making up the extraordinary collection garnered from the world’s leading photographers over two years.
Friendship features a prologue by best-selling author Maeve Binchy, who wrote Circle of Friends. The film version starred Minnie Driver and Chris O’Donnell.
And Kim Phuc, the woman who survived Vietnam war napalm bombing, wrote the prologue to Love. Her story alone as told in two pictures and her prologue is the best example of what the MILK series is about.
The picture taken of Kim as a child running down the road screaming with pain seared the consciences of many. It was a picture seen around the world.
More than 30 years on, a photo of a smiling Kim at home in Canada with her son Thomas, appears in Family.
“When I was younger, I thought no man could love me because of my scars. I was so wrong. Toan and I fell in love … it is a story we save for our children.”
About the pain and deprivations she has suffered since receiving her burns she writes: “‘Love your enemies’, Jesus said. I have never held hate in heart. Never.”
Maeve Binchy says in her prologue: “I have wandered many places in the world, always and everywhere being touched by images of friendship.
“I have often wished that I could photograph forever something as wonderful and enriching as friendship, so it is a joy to sit and leaf through picture after picture by those who have done so.
“It proves, if ever it needed to be proved, that friendship need have nothing to do with coming from the same background and sharing all the same interests. A friendship can grow on the most unlikely and barren ground.”
All three books featuring people from a multiplicity of races and cultures carry the sub-title: A Celebration of Humanity. It’s apt in these times when the temptation to lose faith in the sanctity of all humanity is real.