Renaissance has always been a loaded word in my life. For years, I lived around the corner from Renaissance High School in Detroit, Michigan. This high school, in northwest Detroit with its name and prestige, was classified as the best high school in Motown. Its claim was that the halls hosted the brightest and best students of the city. In fact, middle school students from across the city had to take an entrance test to gain admission. I took that same test in the spring of 1992, and missed the mark by 7 points. A tad peeved, at my test scores, which prohibited me from going to Renaissance, which was only 5 minutes from my house, led me to Thomas M. Cooley Cooley Senior High School, a mile away.

Although I was smart, I was not the strongest test taker, and I also was sad to see so many of my childhood friends be admitted to Renaissance High School. To be clear, my 4 years of Cooley High was ripe with rich memories, and plenty of friendships that I still hold dear to this day. 

When Beyoncé Knowles came out with her 7th studio album on July 29, 2002, I instantly recalled those memories of yesteryear with the name of her album. While I secretly disliked the name, I grew to appreciate its value, and place in history. The tour and the beautiful songs shifted my thoughts regarding this loaded word and now I embrace my fellow Virgo’s way of thinking.  With 2024 upon us, I plan to create my own Renaissance, as I am finally working on major things to propel to the next level. As I have mentioned in previous articles, my search for a forever love has been a mainstay in my life. I have had plenty of situationships. and relationship-like opportunities, but still captured one and only. However, I hope to do a slight shift in its approach for this year. Instead of not looking (never understood that, more on that later), I will concentrate on what I do have. I am soooo blessed to have an abundance of friends and some family who constantly fill my cup with love and laughter. Yes, I still want a partner, and want to give and receive love, but I will start off my 2024 Renaissance with a reframing of thinking.

Let me start with one of the most successful renaissances to ever happen. With all due respect to Queen B, I am very intrigued by the Harlem Renaissance. This important part of history was also deemed the New Negro Movement. The word movement stood out to me, as blacks were searching for new opportunities and peace of mind of overcoming the social stain of slavery. Blacks were concentrated in the deep south, and migrated north to New York City, Detroit and Chicago.  To live during this time (1918-1930) was a beautiful time to learn, grow, and deepen understanding of self. I will work on these same issues, as I look deeper within myself in understanding how my previous actions and situations have played a pivotal role in missing the mark in relationships. I am growing into discovering the art of loving more, while doing less stuff. It is not an easy task, but like the Harlem Renaissance, the sense and overwhelming narrative of self-identity and black expression was felt everywhere, from Harlem to Paris, France. As a man who travels abundantly to see the world, and to quell my curious mind, I will even go to Paris this year to spend some needed time to capture the essence of the life of James Baldwin, who holds a special place in my mind.

I lived in New York City, from 2005-2012 and although I lived in New Jersey (born) and Detroit (raised), it was a shock to see so many people in one place, and this huge world of people, places and all the things was an adult wonderland of everything. It afforded me the opportunity to be myself, but also seek new influences to grow and be greater. Within this year, I will explore this same exploration, as I currently live in Nashville, Tennessee, and although I am keenly aware of the challenges of living my truth in the south, I am reminded how beautiful the volunteer state can be throughout the year. I will take time to slow down the travels and do things near me, and take in more moments of life, and to strengthen the beautiful friendships I have gained over the years. 

When you are single, you are constantly seeking partner possibilities. It can come from random gatherings, but also within intimate spaces when you meet people, such at the local museum, or a sporting game. I am very active in my community and meet plenty of people in my career as a public health curator. I will now reframe those opportunities without the intent of possibly meeting my forever, but be more open to what lies beneath. I will not limit myself, and be more and more open to love and the magic feeling it brings. 

David Wyley-Long, Special Contributor to TUV Magazine 

To conclude, I wish you a renaissance of success for 2024, but within this, please dare to dream bigger and do more. This life we live is quite fickle, and it is all we have. Continue to pour into others, but first keep your cup overflowing with self-love, validation and golden moments.  To my forever love, please let me know when you are ready. I am definitely preparing myself for a timeless renaissance for us for 2024 and beyond. 

You can reach David via Facebook at David Wyley Long, or send an email to