I had begun working on this song for my little sisters, about 25 years ago, when I was between Papua New Guinea and Israel. It is very simple, and not very moving, in my opinion. However, while I was still working on the song my dad asked me to go to the prison where he went to preach every Sunday. While I was sitting behind him, waiting for him to ask me to play the guitar and sing, I added the last verse. I was so focused on remembering it correctly as I sang it, I was completely startled when the room broke out into roars of delight and surprise. Guards hurried in to quell the excitement and I, shaking, finished the song. It was truly the "biggest hit" of my life as far as audience response goes. To this day, I cannot sing it without smiling at the memory.


A                                   D
I was sitting by the river with my fishing cane

A                    E7
Chewing a straw and working my brain

A                           D
‘Long came a tadpole that I used to know

A                                  E7       A
He was hopping and croakin’ like a big fat toad

              E7          A
I said “what happened to you?”



A                          D
I’m a new creature. I’m a new creature!

E7                              A
Old things are passed away and all things became new

I’m a new creature! I’m a new creature!

        E7                                     A-D-A
And if you’re in Christ, you’re a new creature too!



A                                   D
I was strolling thru the park on a warm summer day

A                         E7
Dreamin’ and sippin’ icy lemonade

A                                 D
Smiling at the flowers who were smiling at me

A                         E7       A
‘Long come a caterpillar sportin’ wings

               E7          A
I said, “what happened to you?”



A                               D
I was movin’ down a sidewalk at CCA

A                               E7
Shaking hands and greetin’ on a hot Sunday

A                          D
‘Long come a feller that I used to know

A                                    E7    A
He was smiling and singing like he’d been paroled

               E7         A
I said, “what happened to you?”

He said. . .