When I read this poem, it made me think of all the poor souls in the world who suffer every day, who cry out for help and receive none, and who end up being unnecessarily lost. Whether it is from depression or some other problem, they exude apparently silent pleas for help, and no one responds, so they continue to drown in their problems and are eventually consumed by them.
"Nobody heard him, the dead man, but still he lay moaning: I was much further out than you thought and not waving but drowning." Nobody realized what he was going through. Everyone misconstrued his calls for help for something less important, perhaps just a need for attention or a lousy attitude, when really he was already past the point that he could be saved. "Poor chap, he always loved larking and now he's dead it must have been too cold for him his heart gave way, they said." Everyone thought he was happy and content with life, and that one day life just got too overwhelming for him and, naturally, it overcame him as it would anyone else. "Oh, no no no, it was too cold always (Still the dead one lay moaning) I was much too far out all my life and not waving but drowning." He says that life has always been "too cold," but no one ever saw it. He had always been consumed by his problems, and people refused to see it for what it really was. To me, it seems to say that he never really had a chance of rescue, because he had always been drowning, never waving as everyone thought, so no one would have ever thought to rescue him, because what was there to rescue him from? And still no one sees it and the situation remains as hopeless and trifling as ever.