Friday 23 August 2019


YISROEL-HERSH SHTERN (b. October 11, 1913)
            He was born in Tishevits (Tyszowce), Poland, the son of Avrom Shtern.  He received a traditional education.  He graduated from a seven-level Polish state school and the ORT (Association for the Promotion of Skilled Trades) technical school in Vilna.  He was active with the left Labor Zionists in Vilna and from 1937 in Montreal.  He had several academic degrees—in mathematics, philosophy, and psychology of education.  Over the years 1937-1956, he was a teacher in Canadian Jewish schools, lecturer and associate professor of mathematics and physics at a Canadian university (until 1968).  He wrote poetry, stories, and articles for: Keneder odler (Canadian eagle) in Montreal, Idisher kemfer (Jewish fighter) in New York, Heshbn (Accounting) in Los Angeles, Veker (Alarm), and Tsukunft (Future) in New York, among others.  His work also appeared in: Shmuel Rozhanski, Kanadish (Canadian) (Buenos Aires, 1974); and Joseph Leftwich, An Anthology of Modern Yiddish Poetry (The Hague: Mouton, 1974).  He wrote more in English and won prizes for his English poetry.  For his fictional writings, he used the pen name Ish Yair.  In book form: Vayehi beyeme… (And it came to pass in the days…) (Montreal, 1976), 176 pp.; Avrom reyzen (Avrom Reyzen) (Montreal: Yidishe shul, 1974), 36 pp.; Mani leyb (Mani Leib) (Montreal: Yidishe shul, 1975), 36 pp.

Sources: Shimen Kants, in Letste nayes (Tel Aviv) (April 16, 1976); Moyshe Yungman, in Yisroel shtime (Tel Aviv) (January 19, 1977); Yisroel-Khayim Klinger, in Yidishkeyt (London) (October 1977).
Berl Cohen

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