A London Thoroughfare. 2 A.M.
They have watered the street,
It shines in the glare of lamps,
Cold, white lamps,
Like a slow-moving river,
Barred with silver and black.
Cabs go down it,
And then another,
Between them I hear the shuffling of feet.
Tramps doze on the window-ledges,
Night-walkers pass along the sidewalks.
The city is squalid and sinister,
With the silver-barred street in the midst,
A river leading nowhere.
Opposite my window,
The moon cuts,
Clear and round,
Through the plum-coloured night.
She cannot light the city:
It is too bright.
It has white lamps,
And glitters coldly.
I stand in the window and watch the
She is thin and lustreless,
But I love her.
I know the moon,
And this is an alien city.
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原文：It seems increasingly likely that I really will undertake the expedition that has been preoccupying my imagination now for some days. An expedition, I should say, which I will undertake alone, in the comfort of Mr Farraday’s Ford; an expedition which, as I foresee it, will take me through much of the finest countryside of England to the West Country, and may keep me away from Darlington Hall for as much as five or six days. The idea of such a journey came about, I should point out, from a most kind suggestion put to me by Mr Farraday himself one afternoon almost a fortnight ago, when I had been dusting the portraits in the library.
从这一段就能看出本书的英文特色。老管家说话面面俱到，用了“I should say”，“I should point out”等插入语，这是史蒂文斯的职业习惯用语，翻译时应该保留。下面是冯涛的翻译。
第一次是他父亲去世的晚上，也是达林顿勋爵主持重要政治会议的晚上，在亲情和职守，个人和国家之间，史蒂文斯选择了后者，而错过了看他父亲最后一眼，这个抉择正是他的信念所要求的，也就是书中多次讨论到的管家的尊严：“‘dignity’ has to do crucially with a butler’s ability not to abandon the professional being he inhabits.” 管家的尊严在于无时无刻不放弃自己的职守，为此可以牺牲一切。那个晚上是对伟大的管家的压力测试，史蒂文斯以他强大而近乎残酷的意志压抑住他对父亲的悲哀和爱意，取而代之的是自豪感和胜利感，这个抉择是清晰的，史蒂文斯无条件全身心地把自己交给了他的职业。
“For all its sad associations, whenever I recall that evening today, I find I do so with a large sense of triumph.”
如果一个企业能够杜绝这种收拾下属的文化，而把花在收拾人和提防被人收拾上的精力拿来做研发做产品，那么公司的效率和竞争力得有多大的提升啊。我很幸运能够在一个没有这种内耗的公司工作，也做了几年的所谓“领导”。我在面试经理候选人时经常问的一个问题是：“领导的首要任务是什么？”这个问题没有标准答案，因为每个人都有自己的管理哲学。我自己的答案会是：“建立信任，最大限度地激发下属的潜能。”这才是领导和下属间应有的关系。在《Trillion Dollar Coach》一书中，谷歌的御用教练Bill Campbell说：“The top priority of any manager is the well-being and success of her people.” 这和“收拾”下属是冰和火的两极。